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Introduction: Governing Emergencies: Beyond Exceptionality

Adey, P.; Anderson, B.; Graham, S.

Introduction: Governing Emergencies: Beyond Exceptionality Thumbnail


P. Adey

S. Graham


What characterizes emergency today is the proliferation of the term. Any event or situation supposedly has the potential to become an emergency. Emergencies may happen anywhere and at any time. They are not contained within one functional sector or one domain of life. The substantive focus of the articles collected in this special issue reflects this proliferation: they explore ways of governing in, by and through emergencies across different types of emergencies and different domains of life. In response to this proliferation, the issue opens up critical work on the politics of emergency beyond the ‘state of exception’ as dominant paradigm. Emergency is treated as a problem for government that calls for the invention of new techniques or the redeployment of existing techniques. Through this shift in emphasis, the articles in this issue disclose relations between modalities of power and emergency life that differ from the ‘lightening flash’ of a sovereign decision on the exception taken from outside of life, or the capacity to ‘mould’ an always-already emergent life from within life.


Adey, P., Anderson, B., & Graham, S. (2015). Introduction: Governing Emergencies: Beyond Exceptionality. Theory, Culture and Society, 32(2), 3-17.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Mar 1, 2015
Deposit Date Sep 9, 2014
Publicly Available Date Oct 5, 2015
Journal Theory, Culture and Society
Print ISSN 0263-2764
Electronic ISSN 1460-3616
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 32
Issue 2
Pages 3-17
Keywords Emergence, Emergency, Exception, Governing power.


Accepted Journal Article (445 Kb)

Copyright Statement
Adey, P. and Anderson, B. and Graham, S. (2015) 'Introduction : governing emergencies : beyond exceptionality.', Theory, culture and society., 32 (2). pp. 3-17. Copyright © 2015 The Author(s). Reprinted by permission of SAGE Publications.

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