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As an introduction to political theory and science, this collection of writings by the great philosophers will be of close interest to general readers. It also serves as a basic textbook for students of government and political theory. Such fundamental concepts as Democracy, the Rule of Law, Justice, Natural Rights, Sovereignty, Citizenship, Power, the State, Revolution, Liberty, Reason, Materialism, Toleration, and the Separation of Church and State are traced from their origins, through their development and changing patterns, to show how they guide political thinking and institutions today.
The Fourth Revolution: The Global Race to Reinvent the State
From the bestselling authors of The Right Nation, a visionary argument that our current crisis in government is nothing less than the fourth radical transition in the history of the nation-stateDysfunctional government: It’s become a cliche, and most of us are resigned to the fact that nothing is ever going to change. As John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge show us, that is a seriously limited view of things. In fact, there have been three great revolutions in government in the history of the modern world. The West has led these revolutions, but now we are in the midst of a fourth revolution, and it is Western government that is in danger of being left behind.Now, things really are different. The West’s debt load is unsustainable. The developing world has harvested the low-hanging fruits. Industrialization has transformed all the peasant economies it had left to transform, and the toxic side effects of rapid developing world growth are adding to the bill. From Washington to Detroit, from Brasilia to New Delhi, there is a dual crisis of political legitimacy and political effectiveness.The Fourth Revolution crystallizes the scope of the crisis and points forward to our future. The authors enjoy extraordinary access to influential figures and forces the world over, and the book is a global tour of the innovators in how power is to be wielded. The age of big government is over; the age of smart government has begun. Many of the ideas the authors discuss seem outlandish now, but the center of gravity is moving quickly.This tour drives home a powerful argument: that countries’ success depends overwhelmingly on their ability to reinvent the state. And that much of the West - and particularly the United States - is failing badly in its task. China is making rapid progress with government reform at the same time as America is falling badly behind. Washington is gridlocked, and America is in danger of squandering its huge advantages from its powerful economy because of failing government. And flailing democracies like India look enviously at China’s state-of-the-art airports and expanding universities.The race to get government right is not just a race of efficiency. It is a race to see which political values will triumph in the twenty-first century - the liberal values of democracy and liberty or the authoritarian values of command and control. The stakes could not be higher.
The Empire and the Five Kings: America's Abdication and the Fate of the World
The United States was once the hope of the world, a beacon of freedom and the defender of liberal democracy. Nations and peoples on all continents looked to America to stand up for the values that created the Western world, and to oppose autocracy and repression. Even when America did not live up to its ideals, it still recognised their importance, at home and abroad.But as Bernard-Henri Levy lays bare in this powerful and disturbing analysis of the world today, America is retreating from its traditional leadership role, and in its place have come five ambitious powers, former empires eager to assert their primacy and influence. Levy shows how these five - Russia, China, Turkey, Iran, and Sunni radical Islamism - are taking steps to undermine the liberal values that have been a hallmark of Western civilisation.The Empire and the Five Kings is a cri de coeur that draws upon lessons from history and the eternal touchstones of human culture to reveal the stakes facing the West as America retreats from its leadership role, a process that did not begin with Donald Trump's presidency and is not likely to end with him. The crisis is one whose roots can be found as far back as antiquity and whose resolution will require the West to find a new way forward if its principles and values are to survive.
The Old is Dying and the New Cannot Be Born: From Progressive Neoliberalism to Trump and Beyond
Neoliberalism is fracturing, but what will emerge in its wake?Across the globe politics as usual are being rejected and faith in neoliberalism is fracturing beyond repair. Leading political theorist Nancy Fraser, in conversation with Jacobin publisher Bhaskar Sunkara, dissects neoliberalism's current crisis and argues that we might wrest new futures from its ruins.The global political, ecological, economic, and social breakdown--symbolized, but not caused, by Trump's election--has destroyed faith that neoliberal capitalism is beneficial to the majority. Fraser explores how this faith was built through the late twentieth century by balancing two central tenets: recognition (who deserves rights) and distribution (who deserves income). When these began to fray, new forms of outsider populist politics emerged on the left and the right. These, Fraser argues, are symptoms of the larger crisis of hegemony for neoliberalism, a moment when, as Gramsci had it, "the old is dying and the new cannot be born."
The Empire and the Five Kings
One of the West’s leading intellectuals offers a provocative look at America’s withdrawal from world leadership and the rising powers who seek to fill the vacuum left behind.The United States was once the hope of the world, a beacon of freedom and the defender of liberal democracy. Nations and peoples on all continents looked to America to stand up for the values that created the Western world and to oppose autocracy and repression. Even when America did not live up to its ideals, it still recognized their importance, at home and abroad.But as Bernard-Henri Lévy lays bare in this powerful and disturbing analysis of the world today, America is retreating from its traditional leadership role, and in its place have come five ambitious powers, former empires eager to assert their primacy and influence. Lévy shows how these five - Russia, China, Turkey, Iran, and Sunni radical Islamism - are taking steps to undermine the liberal values that have been a hallmark of Western civilization.The Empire and the Five Kings is a cri de coeur that draws upon lessons from history and the eternal touchstones of human culture to reveal the stakes facing the West as America retreats from its leadership role, a process that did not begin with Donald Trump's presidency and is not likely to end with him. The crisis is one whose roots can be found as far back as antiquity and whose resolution will require the West to find a new way forward if its principles and values are to survive.
The Counterrevolution: How Our Government Went to War Against Its Own Citizens
Harcourt, Bernard E.
A distinguished political theorist sounds the alarm about the counterinsurgency strategies used to govern Americans.Militarized police officers with tanks and drones. Pervasive government surveillance and profiling. Social media that distract and track us. All of these, contends Bernard E. Harcourt, are facets of a new and radical governing paradigm in the United States--one rooted in the modes of warfare originally developed to suppress anticolonial revolutions and, more recently, to prosecute the war on terror.The Counterrevolution is a penetrating and disturbing account of the rise of counterinsurgency, first as a military strategy but increasingly as a way of ruling ordinary Americans. Harcourt shows how counterinsurgency's principles--bulk intelligence collection, ruthless targeting of minorities, pacifying propaganda--have taken hold domestically despite the absence of any radical uprising. This counterrevolution against phantom enemies, he argues, is the tyranny of our age. Seeing it clearly is the first step to resisting it effectively.
The Critical Legal Studies Movement: Another Time, A Greater Task
Unger, Roberto Mangabeira
Critical legal studies is the most important development in progressive thinking about law of the past half century. It has inspired the practice of legal analysis as institutional imagination, exploring, with the materials of the law, alternatives for society. The Critical Legal Studies Movement was written as the manifesto of the movement by its central figure. This new edition includes a revised version of the original text, preceded by an extended essay in which its author discusses what is happening now and what should happen next in legal thought.
The Art of War: The Quintessential Collection of Military Strategy (Knickerbocker Classics)
This elegantly designed edition of The Art of War includes four of history's key treatises: The Art of War; The Prince; On War; Instructions to His Generals.Collected in this elegant volume are four of the most influential military and political treatises in history. Originally written for a specific purpose, the principles conveyed through these strategy texts are universal and timeless, and continue to illuminate and inspire.Whether you approach this reading for its historical significance or choose to apply this knowledge toward achieving success in your own life, you will be enriched. This stunning clothbound hardcover features a slipcase, ribbon marker, historical timeline, and comprehensive introduction providing the reader with enlightening information on the history of each text.The Art of WarIn the oldest and most influential strategy text in existence, Sun Tzu’s teachings (c. 6th century BC) on how to successfully respond to and handle situations of conflict is a must-read for business leaders of today.The PrinceWritten during the Italian Renaissance, Niccolo Machiavelli's (1469–1527) astute observations on how to read people and situations, especially for acquiring and maintaining political power, is a classic primer for politicians and business leaders alike.On WarDrawing on his experience in the Prussian military, General Carl von Clausewitz’s (1780–1831) examination of the realities of warfare, including its moral and psychological aspects, is required reading at military academies.Instructions to His GeneralsEstablishing Prussia as a major force by successfully defeating French, Russian, and Austrian armies during the Seven Years' War, Frederick the Great's (1712–1786) advice on leadership, strategy, tactics, and discipline continues to be relevant.
Do tough times create tougher people? Can humanity handle the power of its weapons without destroying itself? Will human technology or capabilities ever peak or regress? No one knows the answers to such questions, but no one asks them in a more interesting way than Dan Carlin.In The End is Always Near, Dan Carlin looks at questions and historical events that force us to consider what sounds like fantasy; that we might suffer the same fate that all previous eras did. Will our world ever become a ruin for future archaeologists to dig up and explore? The questions themselves are both philosophical and like something out of The Twilight Zone.Combining his trademark mix of storytelling, history and weirdness Dan Carlin connects the past and future in fascinating and colorful ways. At the same time the questions he asks us to consider involve the most important issue imaginable: human survival. From the collapse of the Bronze Age to the challenges of the nuclear era the issue has hung over humanity like a persistent Sword of Damocles.Inspired by his podcast, The End is Always Near challenges the way we look at the past and ourselves. In this absorbing compendium, Carlin embarks on a whole new set of stories and major cliffhangers that will keep readers enthralled. Idiosyncratic and erudite, offbeat yet profound, The End is Always Near examines issues that are rarely presented, and makes the past immediately relevant to our very turbulent present.
What Is Subjectivity?
In 1961, the prolific French intellectual Jean-Paul Sartre was invited to give a talk at the Gramsci Institute in Rome. In attendance were some of Italy’s leading Marxist thinkers, such as Enzo Paci, Cesare Luporini, and Galvano Della Volpe, whose contributions to the long and remarkable discussion that followed are collected in this volume, along with the lecture itself. Sartre posed the question “What is subjectivity?”—a question of renewed importance today to contemporary debates concerning “the subject” in critical theory. This work includes a preface by Michel Kail and Raoul Kirchmayr and an afterword by Fredric Jameson, who makes a rousing case for the continued importance of Sartre’s philosophy.
Rejecting the traditional values of political theory, Machiavelli drew upon his own experiences of office in the turbulent Florentine republic to write his celebrated treatise on statecraft. While Machiavelli was only one of the many Florentine "prophets of force," he differed from the ruling elite in recognizing the complexity and fluidity of political life.
Adorno, Foucault and the Critique of the West
Adorno, Foucault and the Critique of the West argues that critical theory continues to offer valuable resources for critique and contestation during this turbulent period. To assess these resources, it examines the work of two of the twentieth century's more prominent social theorists: Theodor W. Adorno and Michel Foucault. Although Adorno was situated squarely in the Marxist tradition that Foucault would occasionally challenge, Deborah Cook demonstrates that their critiques of our current predicament are complementary in important respects. Among other things, these critiques converge in their focus on the historical conditions-economic in Adorno and political in Foucault-that gave rise to the racist and authoritarian tendencies that continue to blight the West. Cook also shows that, when Adorno and Foucault plumb the economic and political forces that have shaped our identities, they offer remarkably similar answers to the perennial question: What is to be done?
The Idea of Communism 3: The Seoul Conference
Lee, Alex Taek-Gwange (Edt)
An all-star cast of radical intellectuals discuss the continued importance of communist principlesIn 2009 Slavoj Žižek brought together an acclaimed group of intellectuals to discuss the continued relevance of communism. Unexpectedly the conference attracted an audience of over 1,000 people.The discussion has continued across the world and this book gathers responses from the conference in Seoul. It includes the interventions of regular contributors Alain Badiou and Slavoj Žižek, as well as work from across Asia, notably from Chinese scholar Wang Hui, offering regional perspectives on communism in an era of global economic crisis and political upheaval.
In Search of Isaiah Berlin: A Literary Adventure
Isaiah Berlin was one of the greatest thinkers of the twentieth century - a man who set ideas on fire. His defence of liberty and plurality was passionate and persuasive and inspired a generation. His ideas - especially his reasoned rejection of excessive certainty and political despotism - have become even more prescient and vital today.But who was the man behind such influential views? In Search of Isaiah Berlin tells the compelling story of a decades-long collaboration between Berlin and his editor, Henry Hardy, who made it his vocation to bring Berlin's huge body of work into print. Hardy discovered that Berlin had written far more than people thought, much of it unpublished. As he describes his struggles with Berlin, who was almost on principle unwilling to have his work published, an intimate and revealing picture of the self-deprecating philosopher emerges. This is a unique portrait of a man who gave us a new way of thinking about the human predicament, and whose work had for most of his life remained largely out of view.
The Security Principle: From Serenity to Regulation
In The Security Principle, French philosopher Frédéric Gros takes a historical approach to the concept of security, looking at its evolution from the Stoics to the social network. With lucidity and rigour, Gros’s approach is fourfold, looking at security as a mental state, as developed by the Greeks; as an objective situation and absence of all danger, as prevailed in the Middle Ages; as guaranteed by the nation-state and its trio of judiciary, police, and military; and finally biosecurity, control, regulation, and protection in the flux of contemporary society. In this deeply thought-provoking account, Gros’s exploration of security shines a light both on its past meanings and its present uses, exposing the contemporary abuses of security and the pervasiveness of it in everyday life in the Global North.
Liberals and Cannibals: The Implications of Diversity
With debates on the meaning of “liberal society” more heated than ever, this is a timely re-issue of a classic textCan the tension between relativism and the moral universalism current in contemporary politics be resolved within the framework of liberalism? How is liberal society to interpret the diversity of morals? Is pluralism the appropriate response? How does pluralism differ from the widely condemned ethnocentric relativism - “liberalism for the Liberals, cannibalism for the cannibals”?Confronting liberal thought with its own limitations, Steven Lukes’ work is more relevant than ever. While recognizing the dangers of moral imperialism, Lukes argues that a relativist position based on identifying clearly distinct cultural and moral communities is incoherent. Drawing on work in anthropology and philosophy, he examines the nature of social justice, the politics of identity and human rights theory.
The Lives of Michel Foucault
When he died of an AIDS-related condition in 1984, Michel Foucault had become the most influential French philosopher since the end of World War II. His powerful studies of the creation of modern medicine, prisons, psychiatry, and other methods of classification have had a lasting impact on philosophers, historians, critics, and novelists the world over. But as public as he was in his militant campaigns on behalf of prisoners, dissidents, and homosexuals, he shrouded his personal life in mystery.In The Lives of Michel Foucault -- written with the full cooperation of Daniel Defert, Foucault's former lover -- David Macey gives the richest account to date of Foucault's life and work, informed as it is by the complex issues arising from his writings. In this new edition, Foucault scholar Stuart Elden has contributed a new afterword assessing the contribution of the biography in the light of more recent literature.
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