Richer London

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Dr Paul Rekret

Associate Professor of Politics


 Dr Paul Rekret


Before joining Richmond I had been a lecturer in political theory at Queen Mary, University of London. I  hold a BA in Political Science from the University of Toronto, an MA in Philosophy from the Universiteit van Amsterdam, and a PhD in Politics from Queen Mary, University of London.

In order to understand the global politics of digital culture, my work embraces cultural theory, political philosophy and global political economy to interrogate changing relationships between mind and body. This involves exploring questions such as how changing experiences of work might be reflected in the tropes of pop music as well as the music industry itself? It also entails asking how, in an epoch of ‘big data’ and nanotechnology, rapidly changing spatial and temporal scales of media have different effects on lives and identities around the world.

I am also currently the host of ‘Beholder Halfway’, a series of radio documentaries that air monthly on Resonance. Extra and I write regularly for a number of publications on the politics of popular music.

Faculty Research


–Down With Childhood: Pop Music and the Social Status of Children. Repeater Books, 2017.

–Derrida and Foucault: Philosophy, Politics, Polemics, Rowan & Littlefield, 2017.

Selected Journal Articles and Book Chapters:

-‘Critique of New Materialism: Barad, Bennett and Meillassoux and the Politics of Knowledge,’ Theory, Culture, Society, [in press].

-‘Intellectual Property’, in Sara Farris, Beverly Skeggs, Alberto Toscano (Eds.), Handbook of Marxism, London: Sage, [in press] (with Krystian Szadkowski).

-‘Jacques Derrida’, in Jeremy Jennings (Ed.), The Cambridge History of French Thought, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press,[in press].

-‘The Posthumanist Tabula Rasa’ in Research and Education: Policy, Theory & Practice [in press].

– ‘Seeing Like a Cyborg? The Innocence of Posthuman Knowledge’ in Christian Fuchs & David Chandler (eds.), Digial Objects/Digital Subjects: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Big Data Capitalism, London: Westminster University Press, 2018.

-‘Working Holiday: Labour and Leisure in Trap’, Cesura//Accesso, Volume 2, March 2017.

– “The Sovereignty of Sovereignty and the Restricted Object of Critical IR” in Bronwyn Winter & Lucia Sorbera (eds), Contending Legitimacy in World Politics: the State, Civil Society and the International Sphere in the Twenty-First Century, London: Routledge, 2017.

-Republished from Global Discourse, 6(3): 392-5;

-‘Affect and Politics: Assessing the ‘Affective Turn’ in P. Reilly (Eds), Politics and Emotions, Press Books, 2017.

-‘The Question and the Problem’ in Vernon Cisney & Nicolae Morar (Eds.) Between Derrida and Foucault. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2016.

-A Critique of New Materialism: Ethics and Ontology, Subjectivity, Subjectivity 9.3 (2016): 225-245.

-‘From Political Topographies to Political Logics: Laclau, Sohn-Rethel and Real Abstraction’ Constellations: An International Journal of Critical and Democratic Theory, 23.2 (2016): 281-291. [with Simon Choat]

-Paul Rekret, “Generalised Antagonism and Political Ontology in the Debate Between Laclau and Negri” in A. Kioupkiolis & G. Katsambekis (eds), Radical Democracy and Collective Movements Today, London: Routledge, 2016.

-Republished from A. Kioupkiolis & G. Katsambekis (eds), Radical Democracy and Collective Movements Today, London: Ashgate, 2014.

-Translated into Turkish as: “Genelleştirilmiş Karşıtlık ve Laclau ile Negri Arasındaki Tartışmada Siyasal Ontoloji”, KUY Press, 2016

-‘The Impasse of Post-Metaphysical Political Theory: On Derrida and Foucault.’  Telos: Politics After Metaphysics Special Issue. Winter 2012, no. 161.  Pp. 79-98.

Selected Media and Other Outputs:

-Vincent Bevins, ‘What Was the Child? An Interview with Paul Rekret’, the New Inquiry, November 2017.

-Johannes Springer, ‘Interview with Paul Rekret, author of Down With Childhood’, International Association for the Study of Popular Music – US, Interview Series [forthcoming]

-Paul Rekret, ‘Blood of An American’, [sleevenote essay for Bobby Wright, Blood of an American, Melodies International]. Forthcoming 2017.

-Mark Marsdell, ‘The World This Weekend’, discussion of Down With Childhood with Paul Rekret, BBC Radio 4, October 22, 2017.

– Joe Muggs, “Odd Futures: How Hip-Hop Shook Off Its Macho Image and Got Weird”, Guardian, 6 April, 2016.

-Paul Rekret, ‘Kid N’ Playa’ in the Quietus, September 2015.

-Paul Rekret, ‘From NWA to Ferguson’ in the Quietus, May 2015.

Get in touch

I teach on:
BA Political Science
BA International Relations
MA International Relations

Some of the courses I teach:

PLT 6200 –Contemp Pol Theory

PLT 4100 – Major Political Thinkers

PLT 6420 – Gender, Politics and International Relations

PLT 6420 – Gender, Politics and Intl Relations

INR6420 – International Human Rights

INR7101 – Theories of International Relations

INR7500 – MA Dissertation in International Relations

Research Clusters:
The Study of the State, Power and Globalisation

Research Interest & Expertise:

In the aim of understanding global digital culture, from popular music to big data and biotechnology, my research embraces cultural and political theory. These theoretical approaches offer a frame for exploring changing relationships between mind and body in the context of the information age. Starting from the question of the embodiment of human identity and thought has provided me with a theoretical framework from which to understand a wide variety of cultural phenomena including contemporary popular music, children’s cultures, digital media and changing conceptions of what it means to be a human being.

A recently completed monograph entitled Down With Childhood traces a crisis in ideals of childhood innocence. Drawing in particular on Frankfurt School critical theory and feminist political thought, the book traces the sources of this crisis to the demise of the Fordist social contract.

In a series of recent and forthcoming publications, I examine concepts of subjectivity in light of transformations associated with global digital culture. I look to the contexts of biotechnology and digital media production, and ecosystems management in order to assess continuities between conceptions of the body in the present and in early modernity. This follows from earlier research on thought’s relation to the body and to the world which is also the subject of a forthcoming monograph entitled Derrida and Foucault: Philosophy, Politics, Polemics to be published with Rowan and Littlefield in 2017.

Especially with regards to my interest in popular music and culture, I am also a practitioner. I have written for a number of popular culture platforms including The Quietus and Cesura//Acceso and have been interviewed for the Guardian and reviewed in Folha de S.Paulo. I am the host and producer of a regular radio programme entitled ‘Beholder Halfway’ on Resonance FM, a London radio station.