Home > Catalogue > Annali di Ca’ Foscari. Serie orientale > Supplemento 59 | 2023 > Invisible Extinction: Fragility and the Extinction of the Self in Neoliberal Societies

Invisible Extinction: Fragility and the Extinction of the Self in Neoliberal Societies

Oriol Batalla    University of Barcelona, Spain    



Understanding capitalism as a system that inherently triggers extinction, this article portrays how the self and its character have been modified within neoliberalism to a point in which it has lost its subjectivity and it is bound to the laws and logic of capitalism. By looking at necropolitics and psychopolitics from a critical neo-Marxist lens, this article puts external biopolitics at stake while connecting them with different ways capitalism has to alienate subjects that are victims and, at the same time, vassals of this extinctive ideology. In addition, this theoretical framework will be analysed in a more tangible way by close-reading some sections of Black Mirror’s episode “Nosedive” as an example of a dystopia that is not that far away from our reality, where value and morality depend on the superficial image and extreme individuality of the subjects that belong to and perpetuate the ideology and dynamics of internal control, extinguishing their own existence as subjects. Finally, this article interrogates present times attempting to understand whether we are living in the Necrocene, the age of extinction due to capitalist logic, and whether this extinction of the self and its subjectivity might be symptoms of it.

Dec. 1, 2023
May 24, 2023
Nov. 24, 2022

Keywords: NecropoliticsNeo-MarxismCritical theoryCultural analysisPsychopoliticsExtinction studiesNecroceneNeoliberalism

Copyright: © 2023 Oriol Batalla. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.