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Political Theory Workshop: Jihyun Jeong (Duke)

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Thursday, February 08, 2024
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Jihyun Jeong will present her paper, "Victimhood: What Should Victims Do About It?" Please see the abstract below.

The dominant accounts of victimhood claim that victims of injustice should avoid or strive to overcome their victimhood in the realm of political engagement. The accounts consider the political use of victimhood as a hindrance to constructive political action. This paper argues that such a negative perspective on victimhood, deriving from a binary framework of political agents versus victims, overlooks its positive potential in empowering victims to engage in constructive
political action. Drawing on insights into vulnerability as a universal and complex aspect of the human condition, I propose reimagining political agents as vulnerable agents, and victimhood as a vulnerable agent's recognition that one's vulnerability has been unfairly treated. Through this nuanced approach, it becomes evident that victims should adopt a nuanced perspective on their victimhood, embracing and channeling it into constructive political action, rather than avoiding or overcoming it.

Contact: Tejas Luthra