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Judith Butler: My Life, Your Life: Equality and the Philosophy of Non-Violence


The Gifford Lecture Series

‘What does inequality have to do with non-violence?’ These lectures will suggest that a philosophy of non-violence has to take into account forms of inequality that value certain lives more highly than others. So the task is to develop a philosophy of non-violence that allows the moral questions usually associated with non-violent practice to be seen as bearing on questions of political inequality as well. The purpose would be to show that the defence of non-violence cannot be successful if it does not take this kind of differential valuing of life into account, which means that a philosophy of non-violence is only possible within a broader commitment to equality. These questions bear as well on the concepts of grievable and ungrievable life that Professor Butler has developed elsewhere as well as a conception of livable life at work in her critique of precarity.

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