a1 School of Law, University of Dundee*
In a 2002 interview exploring the darker side of modern Western secularism, Talal Asad suggested that instead of trying to fit contemporary Islam within the liberal secular paradigm we might want to ask, ‘What exactly does the liberal mean by tolerance?’ (Shaikh, 2002). Despite the overwhelming abundance of literature conceptualising liberal tolerance, Wendy Brown’s latest book shows that Asad’s question is far from commonplace or rhetorical. Regulating Aversion dissects the anatomy of contemporary liberal discourse of tolerance, challenging the truism that tolerance is an unconditional transcendental virtue, something that has for so long been taken for granted.
* Many thanks to Stewart Motha for enriching exchanges, and for his valuable comments on a draft of this review. Any faults, of course, remain with the author.