The neuropolitical habitus of resonant receptive democracy

Romand Coles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


In this paper, I argue that the recent work on mirror neurons illuminates the character of our capacities for a politics of resonant receptivity in ways that both help us to comprehend the damages of our contemporary order and suggest indispensable alternative ethical_strategic registers and possible directions for organising a powerful movement towards radical democracy. In doing so, neuroscience simultaneously contributes to our understanding of the possibility and importance of a more durable (less fugitive) radically democratic habitus. While the trope, 'radically democratic habitus', may seem oxymoronic in light of Bourdieu's extensive rendering of 'habitus', I suggest that research on mirror neurons discloses ways in which iterated practices and dispositional structures are crucial for democratic freedom.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)273-293
Number of pages21
JournalEthics and Global Politics
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2011


  • Affect
  • Habitus
  • Mimesis
  • Mirror neurons
  • Political resonance
  • Radical democracy
  • Receptivity
  • Resonance machine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


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