Theorie kultureller Abjekte. Zum gesellschaftlichen Umgang mit dauerhaft unintegrierbarem Wissen

Martina F. Biebert, Michael T. Schetsche


Our theoretical draft about cultural abjects is conceptually linked to Julia Kristeva’s (1980) psychoanalytic thoughts concerning abjection. This new, now knowledge-sociological category is determined to unravel the culturally invisible and therefore likewise powerful bodies of knowledge. Cutting inextricably across reality regimes these bodies rest outside permanently, repeatedly causing reality crises. Theoretical springboards are the two forms of socially constructed reality’s legitimation by Berger and Luckmann (1966): therapy and nihilation. We argue that there has to be a third, pre-discursive mode of reality regimes’ securitization: Taking a destabilizing effect already by culturally addressing, this mode spurs to action as soon as potential crisis-generating experiences and phenomenons arise beyond a culture’s horizon. After having outlined our theoretical concept we will elucidate some examples of cultural abjects in past and present eventually questioning the methodological terms and conditions for empirical reconstruction of such hitherto even knowledge-sociological invisible bodies of social constructions of reality.