Resiliens hinsides modstand og tilpasning:

En samtidsdiagnostisk genealogi over tre begreber

  • Bue Rübner Hansen
Nøgleord: resilience, resistance, adaptability, philosophies of war, crisis and climate change


Over the recent decades, the concept of resilience has spread from environmental science to a number of disciplines dealing with crisis and disaster management. From psychology, public health, and human resource management to development and security studies, resilience is replacing an earlier focus on resistance and adaptability within these fields. There exist several studies dealing with resilience discourse as a key to a diagnostic of the present. While some hail resilience as a new register of ecological resistance for social movements, other decries resilience as a discourse legitimating the neoliberal state’s abandonment of the poor to catastrophe. This article proposes a framework for reading together these highly diverging interpretations of resilience through a historicising of the concept of resilience, tracing its rise genealogically in relation to the concepts of resistance and adaptability. Through readings of authors such as Thomas Hobbes, Carl von Clausewitz, Herbert Spencer, and C.J. Holling, the article shows how these concepts were imported from scientific materialism into pragmatic and normative discourses of defence of life against shifting threats to individual and social life. The article shows how the shifting importance of the concepts of resistance, adaptability and resilience must be related to changing social-ecological problems and the forms of contestation and governance that respond to them.


Althusser, P. L. (2014). On the Reproduction of Capitalism: Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses. (G. M. Goshgarian, overs.). London: Verso Books.
Ambinder, E., & Jennings, D. M. (2013). The Resilient Social Network @ OccupySandy #SuperstormSandy. Falls Church, VA: Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate.
Bloom, J., & Martin, W. E. (2014). Black against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.
Böckenförde, E.-W., & Dorhn-van Rossum, G. (1978). Organ, Organismus, Organisation, politischer Körper. I O. Brunner, W. Conze, & R. Koselleck (Red.), Geschichtliche Grundbegriffe - Historische Lexikon zur politisch-sozialen Sprache in Deutschland. Stuttgart: Ernst Klett Verlag.
Caffentzis, G. (1999). On the notion of a crisis of social reproduction: a theoretical review. Women, Development and Labor of Reproduction: Struggles and Movements, 153-187. Trenton NJ: Africa World Press.
Camps-Calvet, M., Langemeyer, J., Calvet-Mir, L., Gómez-Baggethun, E., & March, H. (2015). Sowing Resilience and Contestation in Times of Crises: The Case of Urban Gardening Movements in Barcelona. PACO - The Open Journal of Sociopolitical Studies, 8(2), 417-442.
Caygill, H. (2013). On Resistance: A Philosophy of Defiance by Caygill, Howard (2013) Hardcover. London: Bloomsbury.
Clausewitz, C. von. (1989). On War. (P. Paret & M. Howard, Trans.). Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
D’Alisa, G., Forno, F., & Maurano, S. (2015). Grassroots (Economic) Activism in Times of Crisis - Mapping the redundancy of collective actions. PACO - The Open Journal of Sociopolitical Studies, 8(2), 328–342.
Darwin, C. (1887). The Autobiography of Charles Darwin. London: Barnes & Noble Publishing.
Esposito, R. (2011). Immunitas: The Protection and Negation of Life. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Ewald, F. (1991). Insurance and Risk. I G. Burchell, C. Gordon, & P. Miller (Red.), The Foucault Effect: Studies in Governmentality (s. 197–210). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Fanon, F. (1968). The Wretched of the Earth. New York: Grove Press.
Folke, C., Carpenter, S., Elmqvist, T., Gunderson, L., Holling, C. S., & Walker, B. (2002). Resilience and Sustainable Development: Building Adaptive Capacity in a World of Transformations. AMBIO: A Journal of the Human Environment, 31(5), 437–440.
Foucault, M. (1980). The Confession of the Flesh. I C. Gordon (red.), Power/Knowledge - Selected Interviews and Other Writings (s. 194–228). New York: Pantheon Books.
Foucault, M. (2000). “Governmentality”, i Power: Essential works of Foucault 1954-1984, vol.3. London: Penguin.
Foucault, M. (2004). Society Must be Defended: Lectures at the Collège de France, 1975-76: Lectures at the College De France, 1975 76. (D. Macey, Trans.). London: Penguin.
Fowler, D., & Fowler, P. G. (2002). Lucretius on Atomic Motion: A Commentary on De Rerum Natura, Book Two, Lines 1-332. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Ghiselin, M. T. (1969). Triumph of the Darwinian Method. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Green, W. G. (2008). Resistance and Resilience. Disaster Theory Series No. 4, Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh.
Grimm, V., & Wissel, C. (1997). Babel, or the ecological stability discussions: an inventory and analysis of terminology and a guide for avoiding confusion. Oecologia, 109(3), 323–334.
Guevara, E. “Che.” (2010). Guerrilla Warfare: The Authorised Edition. London: Harper Perennial.
Gunderson, L. H., & Holling, C. S. (2002). Panarchy: Understanding Transformations in Human and Natural Systems. Washington DC: Island Press.
Hansen, B. R. (2016). The Crisis Is the Organism’s Mastering of Itself – A Conceptual and Practical History of the Problem of Crisis through Koselleck and Hegel. I M. Thorup (red.), Intellectual History of Economic Normativity. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
Hardt, M., & Negri, A. (2001). Empire (New Ed udgave). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Hegel, G. W. F. (1991). Elements of the Philosophy of Right. (A. W. Wood, red., H. B. Nisbet, overs.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Hirschman, A. O. (1976). On Hegel, Imperialism and Structural Stagnation. Journal of Development Economics, 3, 1–8.
Hobbes, T. (1998). Leviathan. (J. C. A. Gaskin, red.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Holling, C. S. (2001). Understanding the Complexity of Economic, Ecological, and Social Systems. Ecosystems, 4(5), 390–405.
Homeland Security Council (2007). National Strategy for Homeland Security. Washington DC.
Hopkins, R. (2014). The Transition Handbook: From Oil Dependency to Local Resilience. White River Junction, VT.: UIT Cambridge Ltd.
Johnson, C. (2011). The Neoliberal Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, Late Capitalism, and the Remaking of New Orleans. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.
Kant, I. (2004). Idea for a Universal History with a Cosmopolitan Purpose. I H.B. Nesbit (overs.), Political writings (2. Udg., s. 41–53). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Lorey, I. (2011). Figuren des Immunen: Elemente einer politischen Theorie. Zürich: diaphanes.
Lucretius, T. C. (2001). On the Nature of Things. (M. F. Smith, overs.). Cambridge, MA: Hackett Publishing Co, Inc.
Macpherson, C. B. (1962). Political Theory of Possessive Individualism: Hobbes to Locke. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Malthus, T. (2008). An Essay on the Principle of Population. (G. Gilbert, red.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Marx, K., & Engels, F. (1972). Manifest der Kommunistischen Partei. I Karl Marx/Friedrich Engels - Werke (Vol. Band 4). Berlin: Dietz Verlag. Hentet fra
Mbembe, A. (2001). On the Postcolony. Berkeley: University Press Group Ltd.
Mills, C. W. (2014). The Racial Contract. Ithaka, NY: Cornell University Press.
Mohandesi, S., & Haider, A. (Red.). (2015). Social Reproduction (5). Viewpoint Magazine.
Neocleous, M. (2013). Resisting Resilience. Radical Philosophy, 178, april. Retrieved from
Newton, H. P. (2009). Revolutionary Suicide. New York: Penguin Books.
Newton, S. I. (1729). The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy. (J. Machin, red.). London: B. Motte.
Offe, C. (1984). Contradictions of the Welfare State. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Osborne, P. (2011). The Politics of Time: Modernity and Avant-Garde (2. Udg.). London: Verso.
Pateman, C. (1988). The Sexual Contract. Stanford, CA.: Stanford University Press.
Rousseau, J.-J. (1782). Du contrat social: ou Principes du droit politique. Paris: Cazin.
Schmitt, C. (2010). Theorie des Partisanen.: Zwischenbemerkung zum Begriff des Politischen. (7. Udg.). Berlin: Duncker & Humblot.
Sismondi, J. C. S. de. (1991). New Principles of Political Economy. Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers.
Smith, A. (1904). An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations. (E. Cannan, red.) (5. Udg.). London: Methuen & Co., Ltd.
Sowell, T. (1972). Sismondi: A Neglected Pioneer. History of Political Economy, 4(1), 62–88.
Spencer, H. (1873). Social Statics; Or, The Conditions Essential to Human Happiness Specified, & the First of Them Developed. New York: D. Appleton & Company.
Spencer, H. (1907). Essays, Scientific, Political, and Speculative. New York: D. Appleton & Company.
Sreedhar, S. (2010). Hobbes on Resistance: Defying the Leviathan. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Tse-Tung, M. (2005). On Guerilla Warfare. (S. B. Griffith, overs.). Mineola, NY: Dover Publications Inc.
Turner, J. S. (2013). Homeostasis and the Forgotten Vitalist Roots of Adaptation. In S. Normandin & C. T. Wolfe (Red.), Vitalism and the Scientific Image in Post-Enlightenment Life Science, 1800-2010. Springer Science & Business Media.
Walker, B., & Salt, D. (2012). Resilience Thinking: Sustaining Ecosystems and People in a Changing World. Washington DC: Island Press.
Walker, J., & Cooper, M. (2011). Genealogies of resilience From systems ecology to the political economy of crisis adaptation. Security Dialogue, 42(2), 143–160.
Hansen, B. (2018). Resiliens hinsides modstand og tilpasning:. Slagmark - Tidsskrift for idéhistorie, (73), 117-139. Hentet fra