Forms of Resistance Against the Government of Unemployment in Germany


  • Nora Ziegler University College Maastricht



The research question guiding this study is: What are effective forms of resistance of long-term unemployed in Germany against the government of unemployment? Following Michel Foucault, the government of unemployment is understood as the institutions, procedures, analyses, calculations and tactics forming a set of solutions to unemployment and its social and personal effects. The government of unemployment exercises power over the unemployed through the creation of individualized and politically marginalized subjectivities. The group KEAs e.V. responds to the political marginalization of the unemployed through independent self-organization. Furthermore, they challenge the individualized subjectivities imposed by the government of unemployment by fostering solidarity and practicing “agonal” resistance collectively and individually. This study is based on qualitative research conducted with the KEAs in the form of semi-structured in-depth interviews and participant observation.