Italian theorist Giorgio Agamben is well known for his complex critique of the institution and praxis of thought in the west, and in particular for taking aim at a constellation of ontologico-political structures denoted by the term ‘juridical’. Within this endeavour, Agamben provides a critique of the metaphysical subject and of the related notion of the person. Specifically, for Agamben the figure of the human is structured and produced by the dignitas: the image or mask which bridges the juridical, moral or ‘natural’ person, and the condition of their appearance within law and political life. As he wrote in a recent collection of essays: ‘Persona originally means “mask” and it is through the mask that the individual acquires a role and a social identity’ (2009c: 71).
Recommended CitationParsley, Connal, The Mask and Agamben: the Transitional Juridical Technics of Legal Relation, Law Text Culture, 14(1), 2010, 12-39.