Eugene V. Kuchinov

NSPU K. Minina, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia

Denis S. Shalaginov

Independent Researcher, Moscow, Russia


The article is devoted to a criticism of contemporary “animal politics” which are supposedly immersed in a situation of a humanistic correlationism that forces us to think of—and interact with—the animal only in connection with and through the human. Our critical evaluation focuses primarily on conceptions of a “common world” and Brian Massumi’s zoology of play. Aiming to conceptualize what is not taken into account in these programs, this study is located on the path towards a “materialism of the virtual”; it is supplemented by the theoretical impulse towards separation (Frederic Neyrat), and focuses on the figure of the enemy that enables us to question the “common worlds”. The figure of the enemy is used as a conceptual passkey to unlock and release the concepts of “wild anti-production” and “atopic animal”. At the same time, we take Max Stirner as a kind of animal politics theorist, making it possible to extricate the “animal question” from the humanist coordinate system and reformulate it in terms of ownership, capture, consumption and rebellion. Stirner’s optics enables us to delineate a zone of the “maximal” animal – the zone of encounter-in-becoming, where a dichotomy between human death and animal perishing is annihilated, and the figure of the enemy, which almost coincides with the figures of the animal and the dead, becomes crucial again. The conceptual trajectory of this article is as follows: from the zoology of play and the common world – through the figure of the enemy – to wild anti-production and the maximal animal appropriating (i.e. consuming and destroying) both death and perishing.


Keywords: animal politics, enemy, separation, common world, the wild, the own, maximal animal