1st Edition

On the Politics of Kinship

By Hannes Charen Copyright 2022
    192 Pages
    by Routledge

    192 Pages
    by Routledge

    In this book, Hannes Charen presents an alternative examination of kinship structures in political theory.

    Employing a radically transdisciplinary approach, On the Politics of Kinship is structured in a series of six theoretical vignettes or frames. Each chapter frames a figure, aspect, or relational context of the family or kinship. Some chapters are focused on a critique of the family as a state-sanctioned institution, while others cautiously attempt to recast kinship in a way to reimagine mutual obligation through the generation of kinship practices understood as a perpetually evolving set of relational responses to finitude. In doing so, Charen considers the ways in which kinship is a plastic social response to embodied exposure, both concealed and made more evident in the bloated, feeble, and broken individualities and nationalities that seem to dominate our social and political landscape today.

    On the Politics of Kinship will be of interest to political theorists, feminists, anthropologists, and social scientists in general.


    1. Does the family exist?: Structures and Practices of Kinship

    2. Patrons of the State: Division of the Public and the Private

    3. Myth of "the Family": Biological, Social, Economic

    4. The Political Theology of the Family: Divine, Romantic, Algorithmic

    5. Extraction, Intimacy, and Kinship


    Hannes Charen is an adjunct assistant professor of philosophy, aesthetics, and critical theory at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.

    "A powerful critique of the ideology of the family in the neo-liberal state, offering inspiring alternatives of active expansion of conceptions of care and kinship."

    Jeffrey Champlin, Bard College Berlin

    "The primary new contribution of the book to this old debate over the justice of the family is in Charen’s positing of kinship as a substitute for the conventional conception of the family. … [The] book opens a door to the imagination of such alternatives."

    Rita Koganzon, Perspectives on Politics