Akseli Virtanen: Arbitrary Power. A Critique of Biopolitical Economy

n-1 Edições, São Paulo, Forthcoming 2014.

Translated by Janna Jalkanen-Greenhill. Originally published as Biopoliittisen talouden kritiikki (Tutkijaliitto, Polemos-series, Helsinki 2006)


Preface ”The Importance of New Political Economy”

The Time of Arbitrary Power

I Biopower and Economy


   A Nietzschean Communist

   The Death of Man

   Dynamis dynasteia


The Entrance of Life into History

   General Economy (Allmännä hushållningen)

The Refrain: Oikos, Polis, Nomos

Oikos: The Heroes of Oikos Before Politics

Polis: A Bad Solution to the Heroes’ Problem of Organization

Nomos: Pastoral Power vs. War Machine

   The Birth of Economy

   The New Relation between Politics and Ontology

The Bond between Life and Capitalism

   Theory of Wealth in General Economy

   Production of Value in Political Economy

   What is Labour Power?

   The Commodity Form of Labour Power

   Michel Foucalt’s Political Economy

 II What is Multitude?

   The Birth of Management

   The Meaning of Management (Hjelmslev)

   Sign machines (Guattari)

   Modulation (Deleuze, Simondon)

   The Content and Expression of Management

   Statement (Foucault)

   From Exchange to Production

   Two Historical Formations


   Multitudo, or the Organization of Change

III Biopolitical Economy

Desiring Production

Primitive Coding

   Tribe Organization

   Connotation (pre-signifying sign)

Despotic Overcoding

   State Organization

   Subjugation (sign which signifies a sign)

Capitalistic Axiomatic

   Decoding Organization

   Conjunction (a-signifying sign)


   Production of Society, Production of Economy


The Entrance of Multitudo into Production

   General Intellect

   State of Anomy

   Subjectivity as Capital

   Mimetic Capital

   Politics and Economy

   From Real Abstraction to Ideal Real

   Multitudo as Living Labour

Arbitrary Power

   The Return of Economy into Political Economy

   From Biopower to Power over Life of the Mind

   Production of Ethics

   Arbitrary Nature of the Power over Life of the Mind

   A Critique of Biopolitical Economy

   What Can We Do?


Afterword to the English Edition




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top