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Dr. Karsten Schubert

Dr. Karsten Schubert ist geschäftsführender Assistent an der Professur für Politische Philosophie, Theorie und Ideengeschichte.

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karsten schubert

I am an Assistant Professor (wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter/geschäftsführender Assistent) at the Political Science Department, Section for Political Theory at the University of Freiburg. 

I received my Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Leipzig in May 2017. My dissertation, “Freedom as Critique. The Social-Philosophical Debate About Freedom in Foucault’s Works”, was supervised by Ulrich Johannes Schneider and Markus Gabriel, and published with transcript in 2018. Prior to that, I held appointments as Visiting Scholar at the Philosophy Department of The New School for Social Research (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015) and Cardozo Law School (Fall 2013) in New York. I taught as a Research Associate (Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter) at the Institute of Political Science, Political Theory Section at the University of Duisburg-Essen (2015-2017). Upon finishing the Ph.D., I conducted research as Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences (BIGSSS) at the University of Bremen (2017-2018). 

My primary field of interest and research is political theory and social philosophy, especially in the tradition of post-structuralism and critical theory. My dissertation critically examines the social philosophical debate about freedom, power and subjectification in Foucault's work. More specifically, I developed and discussed a new approach to the problem of freedom in Foucault: Freedom as the capability to critical reflection is instantiated through regimes of subjectification which are dependent on political institutions. My teaching and research covers theories of (radical) democracy, liberalism and republicanism, Marxism, and systems theory, among others. 

My second field of interest is global legal theory, especially human rights philosophy, education, politics and law, as well as question of migration, asylum, democratic membership. I gained working experience in these fields at UNESCO and the United Nations Association of Germany, among others. My third field of interest is diversity politics, especially gender and queer theory and politics, as well as anti-racism. I served as a facilitator for queer education events in Berlin schools with ABqueer e.V. and conducted workshops for queer activists about national and international legal frameworks. My most recent article “The Democratic Biopolitics of PrEP” discusses PrEP (Pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV), bringing together research on biopolitics and gay subjectivity (forthcoming in “The Many Faces of Biopolitics” with Springer).

The postdoctoral research I am undertaking lies at the intersection of these three fields and brings together radical legal philosophy with migration and refugee politics. Taking the failure of the current human rights regime to protect refugees as a point of departure, I investigate radical approaches of legal critique which point out that law, especially in the form of subjective rights, is likely to lead to repression. By asking to what extent such a critique is valid for the field of asylum and migration law, I develop both a critique of these radical legal critiques and a new perspective on migration and refugee politics.



Publication of 

Freiheit als Kritik. Sozialphilosophie nach Foucault.

Bielefeld: transcript 2018

Wie können Freiheit und Widerstand innerhalb von Foucaults Theorie der Macht und Subjektivierung konzipiert werden? Karsten Schubert liefert die erste systematische Rekonstruktion der sozialphilosophischen Debatte um Freiheit bei Foucault und eine neue Lösung für das Freiheitsproblem: Freiheit als die Fähigkeit zur reflexiven Kritik der eigenen Subjektivierung – kurz: Freiheit als Kritik – ist das Resultat von freiheitlicher Subjektivierung in politischen Institutionen. Der Band zeigt so die Konsequenzen von Foucaults Freiheitsdenken für die Demokratietheorie und die allgemeine sozialphilosophische Freiheitsdiskussion auf.


Freedom as Critique. Social-Philosophy After Foucault

How can we conceptualize freedom and resistance in Foucault’s theory of power and subjectification? Karsten Schubert presents the first systematic reconstruction of the social-philosophical debate about freedom in Foucault’s works and a new solution to the problem of freedom: Freedom as the capability to critically reflect on one’s own subjectification – in short: freedom as critique – is the result of free subjectification through political institutions. The book thereby shows the consequences for Foucault’s thinking of freedom for theories of democracy and the general social-philosophical discussion about freedom.


Verlagsseite: https://www.transcript-verlag.de/978-3-8376-4317-6/freiheit-als-kritik/

Leseprobe: https://www.transcript-verlag.de/media/pdf/87/32/fb/ts4317_1.pdf




Daniel Albrecht: Rezension zu: Schubert, Karsten: Freiheit als Kritik. Sozialphilosophie nach Foucault. Bielefeld 2018 , in: H-Soz-Kult, 15.04.2019, www.hsozkult.de/publicationreview/id/rezbuecher-30321

Janina Ruhnau: Rezension Review. Karsten Schubert: Freiheit als Kritik. Sozialphilosophie nach Foucault Bielefeld: transcript Verlag, in: BEHEMOTH A Journal on Civilisation 2018 Volume 11 Issue No. 2, https://ojs.ub.uni-freiburg.de/behemoth/article/view/994

Jana Licht: Online-Rezensionen des Jahrbuchs zur Liberalismus-Forschung 2/2018, Karsten Schubert: Freiheit als Kritik. Sozialphilosophie nach Foucault. Bielefeld: transcript, 2018, 357 S., ISBN: 978-3-8376-4317-6, https://www.freiheit.org/sites/default/files/uploads/2019/01/11/online2-18licht-schubert.pdf 


Adress and Contact

Rempartstr. 15, Room 4311
79085 Freiburg, Germany

+49 761 203-3487



You can find many of my publications on my academia.edu profile: https://uni-freiburg.academia.edu/KarstenSchubert



- nur nach Anmeldung  per Email an karsten.schubert[//AT]politik.uni-freiburg.de

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