Volume 12, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2210-4119
  • E-ISSN: 2210-4127
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This article examines how “parasitical” political language can help explore a new understanding of oppositional opinions in a global context of political polarization. By parasitical political language, I refer to what speech act theorist J.L. Austin calls “infelicitous speech acts”, language that is used unsuccessfully. Jacques Derrida argues that these “incorrect” utterances can escape from an already determined context and extend to a more liberated kind of communication. To explore the potentially “positive” effect of parasitical language, this article examines the utterances of Hong Kong protesters prior to the 2020 US elections as infelicitous speech acts. Their radical political approach, surprisingly, spawned an anti-globalist activist subculture shared by protesters in other parts of the world.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): anti-globalism; democracy; Derrida; dissensus; Hong Kong protests; infelicity; Rancière; speech act
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