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Begetting in the Works of Luc Boltanski and Pierre Legendre: Cross Readings

Fatiha Talahite

In La condition foetale, Luc Boltanski constructs a model of begetting in order to study justifications around the practice of abortion. Drawing upon anthropological premises, he aims to provide a universal foundation for his theory of begetting in the Western world. Pierre Legendre, for his part, places the genealogical institution – which he defines as a mythical space common to all societies but anchored in the West in the Romanocanonical tradition – at the heart of his anthropologie dogmatique. This article examines the ways in which each of these authors, in order to construct a theory of begetting, articulates the universal in Western terms, and how they handle the relation to the Christian religion.