Simon, Joshua. 2016. Betrayal. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

Text (Betrayal)
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Abstract or Description

Betrayal is proposed in this dissertation as a concept that is informed by political theory and by curatorial concepts. Betrayal is conceptualized here as an entanglement of antagonistic relations. It is proposed as an engagement with an antagonism while withdrawing from its underlying logic. Betrayal is presented as a variety of approaches through a set of proposals which include exhaustion, anachronism, fictionalism, demonstration and acting.

Written in the context of curatorial work in Israel-Palestine, this dissertation proposes several qualities of the field of the curatorial and applies them to political theory. Betrayal is considered operational through the field of the curatorial as the curatorial provides a setting for activating potentialities. In the three chapters of this dissertation, Betrayal is developed through an active reading of the lives and work of several figures as method: Alcibiades son of Cleinias, a fifth century BC Athenian politician; the last book published by Sigmund Freud during his lifetime: Moses and Monotheism; and Bertolt Brecht’s notion of Acting in relation to Hannah Arendt’s political Action.

Informed by the curatorial ability to articulate connectedness and activating potentialities, this dissertation deploys Betrayal as a set of strategies that include formation, narrative and agency. The way these entangle antagonisms involves different ways of articulating practices that can move inside-out, can destabilize inwards and can shift the site of articulation of politics itself. The curatorial and Betrayal are thus the centre of this dissertation as it aims to provide a tool for operating in politics.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Identification Number (DOI):


The curatorial, curating, antagonism, anachronism, exhaustion, fictionalism, Palestine-Israel, Israel-Palestine, action and acting, politics and the political

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Visual Cultures


30 June 2016

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

28 Jul 2016 10:08

Last Modified:

08 Sep 2022 13:55


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