|Reference: policial in English|
I think Simon's suggestion of "authoritarian" is the best option here. However, I just wanted to mention an alternative that I've considered but decided not to put forward as an answer: "policial".
Obviously policial is a very rare word in English, but it is not unprecedented: Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary of 1913 lists it, with the definition “relating to the police”.
The writer is using "policial" here in a way that is reminiscent of how Badiou, and more particularly Jacques Rancière, use "policier", notably in the expression "l'ordre policier". This tends to be rendered in English as "police order". To get an idea of what Rancière means by this, see Gabriel Rockhill's translation of Le Partage du sensible, as The Politics of Aesthetics, glossary, p. 89:
"Police or Police Order (La Police or L'Ordre policier)
As the general law that determines the distribution of parts and roles in a community as well as its forms of exclusion, the police is first and foremost an organization of 'bodies' based on a communal 'distribution of the sensible', i.e. a system of coordinates defining modes of being, doing, making, and communicating that establishes the borders between the visible and the invisible, the audible and the inaudible, the sayable and the unsayable".
In a more technical philosophical text than this, I think an English-speaking academic commentator might well consider using the adjective "policial", to signal that this sense of "policier" is being invoked. Without wishing to sound too irreverent, for many writers of this kind it is not only acceptable for their prose not to sound like everyday English; it is a positive advantage.
However, this is not really a technical text, and so I think it would be too forced. But here are a couple of examples to show that the usage is not totally unknown:
“Nor is the problem confined [...] to the historial event or intervention, nor to sabotaging the entire state of affairs, the state regime or policial order of memory that requires that this excess knowledge or “knowing too much” be repressed”
Tom Cohen, Hitchcock’s Cryptonymies: War Machines
(Note “historial event” here, by the way: not the same thing as historical.)
Bruce’s departure from Gotham was a result of his trauma, and his new mission to fight crime upon his return links his future as Batman to his past as traumatized Bruce Wayne. In other words, the link operates entirely within Bruce’s psychic economy, and not in an objective criminal or policial order.
“Bruce Wayne’s Traumatic Past and Batman’s New History: Ego-Ideal and Ideal Ego in the Batman Origin Myth”, Honors Thesis http://www.honors.ufl.edu/webapps/thesis/GetThesis.aspx?FID=...
Happy Christmas, everyone!
Note added at 8 hrs (2010-12-25 00:50:27 GMT)
PS. I assume it is obvious that when Rancière and others refer to "police" in this special sense, as in the paragraph quoted above, they're not talking about the actual police force, which Rancière calls the "basse police".
| Charles Davis|
Works in field
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 56