Giorgio Agamben gives us two ways to conceive of sovereign power: according to the exception and according to the example. He famously follows the former in his Homo Sacer project, but I develop and follow the latter, which I find present in Plato's Laws. There, Plato gives us a view of sovereignty in its constitutional moment, showing us how constituting and constituted power emerge together from the relationship between law and the communal narrative upon which it rests. This form of sovereignty cannot be expressed according to the state of exception but requires an analysis from the state of example. The figure that emerges here, homo magus, provides the basis for an alternate archaeology of power, one in which sovereignty does not attempt to reduce political subjectivity to "bare life" but rather attempts to reduce political speech to "bare speech."


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pp. 407-423
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