Joonas S. Martikainen

Researcher in Philosophy, Social and Political Theory

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Research Interests

My main research interest is political agency as it is experienced by agents themselves and democracy as an intersubjective phenomenon. My research makes connections between multiple fields of philosophy and social criticism.

You can visit my ORCID page here. You can also visit my page on the University of Helsinki Research Portal.

My 2021 doctoral dissertation "Political Poverty as the Loss of Experiential Freedom" investigates the ways that individuals and groups can lose a sense of meaningful political agency while remaining ostensibly included in democratic processes. I give a heuristic diagnosis of the phenomenon and describe it as a loss of faith in oneself as a political agent and a loss of faith in the capacity of democratic institutions to bring about meaningful change. I describe such loss of faith as the fracturing of a pre-personal embodied relationship to the social world. Such loss of faith can make marginalized groups complicit in their own domination while remaining unable to challenge it. The dissertation can be accessed freely at Helda.

My post-doctoral research explores solidarity and the intersubjective enabling conditions of political freedom. I focus on the temporal dimension of intentional experience and its dependence on social factors outside the agent's control. My aim is to provide an account of the affective and experiential components of positive democratic engagement.

My upcoming work will investigate solidarity as a political ethos that goes beyond understandings of solidarity as a moral relationship, providing an alternative to pre-given ethics of political practice. An important aspect of this work is the temporal aspect of our relationship to our social environment. I have a strong suspicion that our experience of time is an aspect of intentional experience which is connected to our social situation and our share in inequally shared social goods such as employment, a fact heretofore left mostly unexamined by political philosophy and theory.


Forthcoming publications and papers under research


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