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ABSTRACT. In this essay I examine the figure of dissident thought in the contexts of philosophical, jurisprudential and political thought. I connect dissidence to the concept of dissent and its linguistic cognates including “disagreement” and “opposition,” but also the logic of negation in order to examine dissent as a condition of discourse. In the second and third sections I argue for dissent as a philosophy of non-agreement and review a theory of dissent in law. Finally, I speculate on the history of dissent and dissidence from local contexts to its first wave of global protest with the development of new social movements and the counter-culture of the 1960s and 1970s in order to postulate the changed conditions of dissent in a global, digital, mediatized world. In a postscript I ask whether there are a set of counter-conducts (Davidson, 2011) or counter-practices that can encourage a second wave of global protest, new forms of civic engagement and disobedience. pp. 20–36

Keywords: dissidence; dissent; disagreement; opposition; negation; disobedience

How to cite: Peters, Michael A. (2016), “Dissident Thought: Systems of Repression, Networks of Hope,” Contemporary Readings in Law and Social Justice 8(1): 20–36.

Received 9 May 2015 • Received in revised form 17 July 2015
Accepted 17 July 2015 • Available online 1 October 2015

doi:10.22381/CRLSJ8120162

MICHAEL A. PETERS
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
University of Waikato; New Zealand
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, United States

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