The current issue of New Left Review has an intriguing introduction from its guest editor Malcolm Bull:

A selection of the most pressing political questions of the moment might include the following: should women wear headscarves? May we buy and sell our bodily organs? How can we control the weather? [My emphasis]

And he continues:

“The questions sound almost frivolous, and they are certainly not matters on which the canonical texts and traditions of political theory give much purchase. (What is a conservative position on the hijab? A socialist view of organ harvesting? A liberal policy on climate change?) That such issues should simultaneously be among the most debated of our time suggests a fundamental transformation in the landscape of politics.”

Bull attempts to address the question by theming his guest issue of NLR about ‘biopolitics’, maybe itself a new category of discourse, where health, the environment and biodiversity meet political economy. But phrased the way he has phrased it, it’s clearly a sign of a shift in public discourse. They aren’t questions which would have been given any time in serious places even five years ago, let alone a decade.

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