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Considers the problems of sovereignty through the work of Rousseau, Arendt, Foucault, Agamben, and Derrida. 'Following up on the fables and stories surrounding political sovereignty—once theological, now often nationalist—Peter Gratton’s The State of Sovereignty takes aim at the central concepts surrounding the post-9/11 political environment. Against those content to conceptualize what has been called the “sovereign exception,” Gratton argues that sovereignty underwent profound changes during modernity, changes tracked by Rousseau, Arendt, Foucault, Agamben, and Derrida. Each of these thinkers investigated the “fictions” and “illusions” of claims to sovereign omnipotence, while outlining what would become the preeminent problems of racism, nationalism, and biopower. Gratton illustrates the principal claims that tie these philosophers together and, more importantly, what lessons they offer, perhaps in spite of themselves, for those thinking about the future of politics. His innovative readings will open new ground for new and longtime readers of these philosophers alike, while confronting how their critiques of sovereignty reshape our conceptions of identity, freedom, and selfhood. The result not only fills a long-standing need for an up-to-date analysis of the concept of sovereignty but is also a tour de force engaging readers in the most important political and philosophical questions today.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright Page
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-xi
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-26
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  1. Chapter One: Rousseau and the Right of Life and Death over the Body Politic
  2. pp. 27-62
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  1. Chapter Two: Arendt’s Archaeology of Sovereignty
  2. pp. 63-93
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  1. Chapter Three: “The World is at Stake”: Sovereignty and the Right to Have Rights
  2. pp. 95-112
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  1. Chapter Four: Torturing Sovereignty: Foucault’s Regicide in Theory
  2. pp. 113-160
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  1. Chapter Five: What More Is There to Say?: Agamben and the Hyperbole of Sovereignty
  2. pp. 161-199
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  1. Chapter Six: Derrida and the Limits of Sovereignty’s Reason: Freedom, Equality, but Not Fraternity
  2. pp. 201-226
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  1. Conclusion
  2. pp. 227-232
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 233-268
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 269-281
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 283-287
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Additional Information

ISBN
9781438437866
Related ISBN
9781438437859
MARC Record
OCLC
809258742
Pages
320
Launched on MUSE
2012-08-22
Language
English
Open Access
No
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