Author: Augustine Thompson, O.P.
Publication Info: Penn State Press, 2005.
“Thompson positions the Italian republics in sacred space and time.He maps their religious geography as it was expressed throughpolitical and voluntary associations, ecclesiastical and civil structures,common ritual life, lay saints, and miracle-working shrines.He takes the reader through the rituals and celebrations of the communalyear, the people’s corporate and private experience ofGod, and the “liturgy” of death and remembrance.In the process he challenges a host of stereotypes about “orthodox” medieval religion, the Italian city-states, and the role of new religious movements in the world of Francis of Assisi, Thomas Aquinas, and Dante.”
Author: Michael Hardt
Publication Info: Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 2009.
“When Empire appeared in 2000, it defined the political and economic challenges of the era of globalization and, thrillingly, found in them possibilities for new and more democratic forms of social organization. Now, with Commonwealth, Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri conclude the trilogy begun with Empire and continued in Multitude, proposing an ethics of freedom for living in our common world and articulating a possible constitution for our common wealth.
Drawing on scenarios from around the globe and elucidating the themes that unite them, Hardt and Negri focus on the logic of institutions and the models of governance adequate to our understanding of a global commonwealth. They argue for the idea of the “common” to replace the opposition of private and public and the politics predicated on that opposition. Ultimately, they articulate the theoretical bases for what they call “governing the revolution.”
Though this book functions as an extension and a completion of a sustained line of Hardt and Negri’s thought, it also stands alone and is entirely accessible to readers who are not familiar with the previous works. It is certain to appeal to, challenge, and enrich the thinking of anyone interested in questions of politics and globalization.”
Author: Roberto Esposito
Translator: Timothy C. Campbell
Publication Info: Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2010
“No theme has been more central to international philosophical debates than that of community: from American communitarianism to Habermas’s ethic of communication to the French deconstruction of community in the work of Derrida and Nancy. Nevertheless, in none of these cases has the concept been examined from the perspective of community’s original etymological meaning: cum munus. In Communitas: The Origin and Destiny of Community, Roberto Esposito does just that through an original counter-history of political philosophy that takes up not only readings of community by Hobbes, Rousseau, Kant, Heidegger and Bataille, but also by Hölderlin, Nietzsche, Canetti, Arendt, and Sartre. The result of his extraordinary conceptual and lexical analysis is a radical overturning of contemporary interpretations of community. Community isn’t a property, nor is it a territory to be separated and defended against those who do not belong to it. Rather, it is a void, a debt, a gift to the other that also reminds us of our constitutive alterity with respect to ourselves.”
Editor: Ralph Pordzik
Publication Info: Rodopi: Amsterdam/New York, NY, 2009.
“This book testifies to the growing interest in the many spaces of utopia. It intends to ‘map out’ on utopian and science-fiction discourses some of the new and revisionist models of spatial analysis applied in Literary and Cultural Studies in recent years. The aim of the volume is to side-step the established generic binary of utopia and dystopia or science fiction and thus to open the analysis of utopian literature to new lines of inquiry. The essays collected here propose to think of utopias not so much as fictional texts about future change and transformation but as vital elements in a cultural process through which social, spatial and subjective identities are formed. Utopias can thus be read as textual systems implying a distinct spatial and temporal dimension; as ‘spatial practices’ that tend to naturalize a cultural and social construction – that of the ‘good life’, the radically improved welfare state, the Christian paradise, the counter-society, etc. – and make that representation operational by interpellating their readers in some determinate relation to their givenness as sites of political and individual improvement.
This volume is of interest for all scholars and students of literature who wish to explore the ways in which utopias of the past and recent present have circulated as media of cultural exchange and homogenization, as sites of cultural and linguistic appropriation and as foci for the spatial formation of national and regional identities in the English-speaking world.”