In Politics of Friendship Jacques Derrida reveals the core of Carl Schmitt's thinking concerning the political: ?If thepolitical is to exist, one must know who everyone is, who is a friend and who is an enemy, and this knowing is not in the mode of theoretical knowledge but in one of apractical identification.?Nevertheless, the enemy, who actually isidentified, is not Carl Schmitt's real enemy. On the contrary, the identified enemy is his friend to the extent that it constitutes (...) by exclusion what is most important to Schmitt: the existence of the political, and thereby, the Volk. Schmitt's real enemy is, as I try to demonstrate in this article, anyone who is not identified, the anonymous ?natural existence of groups of individuals who just happen to live together? (Schmitt). In Schmitt's Nazi-period this anonymous individual got a concrete?although still non-identified?content: an assimilated Jew. And although Schmitt thought that he was a Christian thinker, in the end of this article I argue that the very first assimilated Jew was indeed St Paul, and that his doctrine of the ?life in Christ? can be taken as a point of departure for thinking politics beyond enemies and exclusion. (shrink)
ExcerptAfter emigrating to the United States, Leo Strauss taught political philosophy for thirty years, first at the New School for Social Research in New York and then at the University of Chicago, before retiring at St. John's College. Richard Wolin observes that he “seems to have deeply mistrusted day-to-day politics—a very strange stance, to be sure, for someone who made his living teaching political philosophy.”1 But is it really so strange? What in his German Gymnasium education, or his participation in (...) the Zionist movement, would have prepared him for the peculiarities of day-to-day American politics? Strauss did not underestimate the…. (shrink)
This book argues that a radical political gesture can be found in Søren Kierkegaard’s writings. The chapters navigate an interdisciplinary landscape by placing Kierkegaard’s passionate thought in conversation with the writings of Georg Lukács, Carl Schmitt, Walter Benjamin and Theodor Adorno. At the heart of the book’s argument is the concept of “indirect politics,” which names a negative space between methods, concepts, and intellectual acts in the work of Kierkegaard, as well as marking the dynamic relations between Kierkegaard and (...) the aforementioned thinkers. Kierkegaard’s indirect politics is a set of masks that displaces identities from one field to the next: theology masks politics; law masks theology; political theory masks philosophy; and psychology masks literary approaches to truth. As reflected in Lukács, Schmitt, Benjamin, and Adorno, this book examines how Kierkegaard’s indirect politics sets into relief three significant motifs: intellectual non-conformism, indirect communication in and through ambiguous identities, and negative dialectics. Bartholomew Ryan is currently a postdoctoral fellow (2011- ) at the Instituto de Filosofia da Nova, New University of Lisbon, Portugal. He holds degrees from Aarhus University, Denmark (PhD), University College, Dublin (MA), and Trinity College, Dublin (1999). He was visiting lecturer at the European College of Liberal Arts in Berlin (2007-2011) and Lady Margaret Hall, University of Oxford (2010), and was a guest scholar at the Søren Kierkegaard Research Centre in Copenhagen (2007 and 2005) and Hong Kierkegaard Library at St. Olaf College, Minnesota (2005). He has written extensively on Kierkegaard, and also published articles on Nietzsche, Pessoa, Joyce, Shakespeare and Schmitt. (shrink)
Carl Schmitt's Political Theology, recycled into The Concept of the Political, was meant to be to political theory what the Book of Job has been to Judaism, and through Judaism to Christianity. It was intended/designed/ hoped to answer one of the most notoriously haunting of the born-in-Jerusalem questions: a sort of question with which the most famous of the born-in-Jerusalem ideas, the idea of the one and only God, omnipresent and omnipotent creator, judge and saviour of the whole Earth (...) and the whole humanity, could not but be pregnant. The question, however, had to be born once the Hebrew Prophet Jesus declared the omnipotent God to be in addition the God of Love, and when his disciple, St Paul, brought the good tidings to Athens — a place where questions, once asked, were expected to be answered, and answered in tune with the rules of logic. Taking absolute power, the God of monotheistic religion took absolute responsibility for the blessings and blows of fate. The Book of Job recasts the frightening randomness of Nature as the frightening arbitrariness of its ruler: God speaks and gives commands. But just like numb Nature, he is not bound by what humans think or do. He can make exceptions. Indeed, the rule of norm is by definition irreconcilable with a true sovereignty — with the absolute power to decide. To be absolute, power must include the right to neglect/suspend/ abolish the norm. Schmitt's idea of sovereignty would engrave the preformed vision of divine order onto the ground of legislative order. Power to exempt founds simultaneously God's absolute power and the human's continuing, incurable fear born of insecurity. This is exactly what happens, according to Schmitt, in case of the human sovereign no longer handcuffed by norms. Thanks to that power of exemption, humans are, as they were in the pre-Law times, vulnerable and uncertain. (shrink)
In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:At St. Isidore’s Franciscan College in Rome, the following maxim attributed to St. Patrick is inscribed above the door-way of the church: Si quae difficiles quaestiones in hac insula oriantur ad Sedem Apostolicam referantur; ut Christiani ita et Romani sitis.1 The college was founded in 1625 by Luke Wadding, O.F.M. and, under his direction, became a major seat of theological learning and political influence for the Irish in Rome.2 (...) In the nineteenth century, the Friars Minor of the Province of Ireland assigned many documents from St. Isidore’s for use in their Irish friaries. In 1872, amid the unrest caused by the Risorgimento, medieval and early-modern Irish Franciscan manuscripts were transferred to Dublin.3 At the Merchants’ Quay Convent, the librarians T.A. O’Reilly, O.F.M. and E.B. Fitzmaurice, O.F.M. divided the manuscripts into sections with alphabetically ordered shelf-marks.4 This practical approach followed the long-established system used at Italian libraries and archives in Franciscan custody.5 From 1947 until 2000, the manuscripts of the Irish Friars Minor were kept at the Franciscans’ Dún Mhuire House of Studies in Killiney, County Dublin, before their transfer to the Archives, University College Dublin.The ‘D’ collection is preserved in twenty-six sets of volumes, folders and boxed papers. The greater part consists of Luke Wadding’s correspondence, relating to his activities as theologian, historian, Irish agent in Rome and consultor to several congregations and commissions at the papal secretariat.6 In the 1920s, Paul Grosjean, S.J. included four manuscripts then housed at Merchants’ Quay in a catalogue of hagiographical works.7 Clement Schmitt, O.F.M. treated of a collection of the Franciscan documents kept in Dublin in 1964.8Letters to and from Luke Wadding are also preserved at the Vatican Library; the Archivo Generale at the General Curia of Friars Minor, Rome; the Biblioteca Landiana, Piacenza; the Biblioteca Nazionale, Naples; the Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Milan; the Archives of the Bollandists, Brussels; the Archives Générales de Royaume, Brussels; the Von Harrach Archive, Vienna; and the Franciscan friary of St. Jerome in Vienna.9Compared to some six hundred that Luke Wadding received, “the text of approximately one hundred of his letters, in whole or in part, has survived.”10 Nearly all Wadding’s extant correspondence dates from the three decades after the publication of his Acta legationis on the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception in 1624. Most of his letters were sent from St. Isidore, some from the friaries of Aracoeli and San Pietro in Montorio, Rome, and a few from Naples.11Luke Wadding was born in Waterford on October 16, 1588, the eleventh of fourteen children.12 He was baptized two days later on the Feast of St. Luke. His father Walter was a well-established Waterford merchant and his mother Anastasia a kinswoman of the prominent Lombard family of Waterford. After the death of his parents, Luke left Ireland with his elder brother, Matthew, who enrolled him at the Irish Jesuits’ College in Lisbon. At seventeen years of age, Wadding made his way to Matozinhos in northern Portugal, near Oporto, where he entered the Franciscan Order. On completion of his novitiate, Wadding’s superiors sent him to the University of Coimbra and from there, to Salamanca. At Easter 1613, Luke Wadding was ordained to the priesthood after his studies. He was then appointed as a professor of theology at the Franciscan College of León and later at his own alma mater, Salamanca.13Called to the Spanish capital, Luke Wadding stayed at the Convent of Jesus and Mary in the south-east of Madrid where “lived not only the heads of the Franciscan Order in Spain but also the principal preachers.”14 Such was the distinction Wadding achieved that he was chosen by Philip III for the office of theologian in the embassy sent to defend the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception in Rome.15 He lived there for almost forty years, in which time he founded St. Isidore Franciscan College, the.. (shrink)
In 1979, on the thirty-ninth anniversary of the closing of the Franco-Spanish border at Port Bou and one day before the anniversary of the suicide of Walter Benjamin, Jacob Taubes and Carl Schmitt opened the Bible in the Sauerland. The two men sat down in Plettenburg to read St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans, chapters 9-11. As if in memory of Benjamin, they spoke “under a priestly seal”: Schmitt, the most important state law theorist of the twentieth century, (...) a Roman Catholic and sometime member of the Nazi Party; Taubes, a Jewish philosopher of a Messianic and oddly left-wing disposition.…. (shrink)
Kempner. You do not have to testify, Professor Schmitt, if you do not want to, and if you think you are incriminating yourself. But if you do testify, then I would be grateful if you would be absolutely truthful, would neither conceal nor add anything. Is that your wish? Schmitt: Yes, of course. Kempner: And if I come to something you might find self-incriminating, you can simply say you prefer to remain silent. Schmitt: I have already been (...) interrogated by the C.I.C. and in the camp. I would be glad to tell you all I know. However, I would like to know what I am being blamed with. (shrink)
This chapter traces Taubes’s covenantal apocalypticism from Occidental Eschatology to The Political Theology of Paul—the two books which beginning readers of Taubes should focus upon. Taubes’s writings present and enact the memory of apocalypticism as the memory of the covenant. The historic figures he deals with in his works—St. Paul, Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, Marx, Freud, Barth, and Schmitt—are the enemy brothers in the struggle with whom Taubes finds a way to live in the presence of God.
Carl Schmitt's friend/enemy principle is exposed to in-depth philosophical analysis and historical examination with the aim of showing that the political follows hostility, violence and terror as form follows matter. The book argues that the partisan is an umbrella concept that includes the national and global terrorist.
Within Germany, Carl Schmitt's status as a political thinker is on a par with Machiavelli and Hobbes. With the rise in neo-conservatism and authoritarian liberalism in less developed countries such as Chile and Singapore, Renato Christi believes Schmitt's theories will become of considerable importance. Nazi Third Reich. His political theories provide an insight into the nature of Conservatism. well as extrapolate possibilities for the future.
Gottfried looks at Schmitt as a critic of modern liberalism and as a defender of the national state who carefully examined Western historical and political traditions. Challenging the view that Schmitt was a mere polemicist who set out to subvert "German Democracy", Gottfried's work argues instead, that Schmitt criticized liberal democracy from a highly liberal reflective position that combined analytical depth with staggering erudition. This new source also provides a useful bibliography on secondary literature dealing with Carl (...)Schmitt's work. (shrink)
This is the first in-depth critical appraisal in English of the political, legal, and cultural writings of Carl Schmitt, perhaps this century's most brilliant critic of liberalism. It offers an assessment of this most sophisticated of fascist theorists without attempting either to apologise for or demonise him. Schmitt's Weimar writings confront the role of technology as it finds expression through the principles and practices of liberalism. Contemporary political conditions such as disaffection with liberalism and the rise of extremist (...) political organizations have rendered Schmitt's work both relevant and insightful. John McCormick examines why technology becomes a rallying cry for both right- and left-wing intellectuals at times when liberalism appears anachronistic, and shows the continuities between Weimar's ideological debates and those of our own age. (shrink)
Carl Schmitt's critique of liberalism has gained increasing influence in the last few decades. This article focuses on Schmitt's analysis of international law in The Nomos of the Earth, in order to uncover the reasons for his appeal as a critic not only of liberalism but of American hegemonic aspirations as well. Schmitt saw the international legal order that developed after World War I, and particularly the "criminalization of aggressive war," as a smokescreen to hide U.S. aspirations (...) to world dominance. By focusing on Schmitt's critique of Kant's concept of the "unjust enemy," the article shows the limits of Schmitt's views and concludes that Schmitt, as well as left critics of U.S. hegemony, misconstrue the relation between international law and democratic sovereignty as a model of top-down domination. As conflictual as the relationship between international norms and democratic sovereignty can be at times, this needs to be interpreted as one of mediation and not domination. (shrink)
Carl Schmitt is one of the most widely read and influential German thinkers of the twentieth century. His fundamental works on friend and enemy, legality and legitimacy, dictatorship, political theology and the concept of the political are read today with great interest by everyone from conservative Catholic theologians to radical political thinkers on the left. In his private life, however, Schmitt was haunted by the demons of his wild anti-Semitism, his self-destructive and compulsive sexuality and his deep-seated resentment (...) against the complacency of bourgeois life. As a young man from a modest background, full of social envy, he succeeded in making his way to the top of the academic discipline of law in Germany through his exceptional intellectual prowess. And yet he never felt at home in the academic establishment and among those of high social standing. In his works, Schmitt unmasked the liberal Rechtsstaat as a constitutional façade and reflected on the legitimacy of dictatorship. When the Nazis seized power Schmitt was susceptible to their ideology. He broke with his Jewish friends, joined the Nazi Party in May 1933 and lent a helping hand to Hitler, thereby becoming deeply entangled with the regime. Schmitt was irrevocably compromised by his role as the ‘crown jurist’ of the Third Reich. But by 1936 he had already lost his influential position. After the war, he led a secluded life in his home town in the Sauerland and became a key background figure in the intellectual scene of postwar Germany. Reinhard Mehring’s outstanding biography is the most comprehensive work available on the life and work of Carl Schmitt. Based on thorough research and using new sources that were previously unavailable, Mehring portrays Schmitt as a Shakespearean figure at the centre of the German catastrophe. (shrink)
“Karl Marx may have discovered profit, but I discovered political profit.” Carl Schmitt's only half-joking remark plays with a persistent problem for political theory since Hegel — the often perplexing similarity of ideological positions on the left and the right. German intellectual history in this century presents an unusually complicated example of such “convergence” in the reception of Schmitt's work by the Frankfurt School. The controversy surrounding Schmitt is not so much about the quality and depth of (...) his work as about its political consequences. An uncomfortable question for intellectual history in general, the case of Schmitt is most problematic for the German left. (shrink)
Carl Schmitt's polemical discussion of political Romanticism conceals the aestheticizing oscillations of his own political thought. In this respect, too, a kinship of spirit with the fascist intelligentsia reveals itself. Jürgen Habermas, “The Horrors of Autonomy: Carl Schmitt in English”The pinnacle of great politics is the moment in which the enemy comes into view in concrete clarity as the enemy.Carl Schmitt, The Concept of the Political (1927).
Carl Schmitt's work on the international order during the Second World War has been comparatively neglected. There is, however, a strong connection between Schmitt's understanding of political concepts and the nature of the political and his writings on the international order. In order to understand those writings and the contemporary response that they provoked it is necessary to set them in the context of the dilemmas of Nazi occupation policy. This article concludes that Schmitt failed to resolve (...) those dilemmas but also that his attempt to solve them reveals the deficiency of Schmitt's understanding of the nature of political concepts. (shrink)
Reorienting the Political examines the reception of two controversial German philosophers, Carl Schmitt and Leo Strauss, in the Chinese-speaking world. This volume explores the powerful resonance of both thinkers in Chinese political thought from a cross-cultural and interdisciplinary perspective.
Carl Schmitt verfügt heute über eine so breite und stets wachsende internationale Leserschaft wie kein anderer deutscher Staatsrechtslehrer des vergangenen Jahrhunderts. Sein Werk wird dabei freilich meist isoliert betrachtet und allenfalls auf den staatsrechtlichen Kontext bezogen. Im Mittelpunkt dieses Buches steht dagegen der politische Intellektuelle, der weit über die Grenzen seines Faches hinauswirkte. Besondere Aufmerksamkeit gilt dabei den Anfangs- und den Endjahren der Weimarer Republik. Während Schmitt in München Strategien zur Zähmung der Revolution entwickelte, setzte er sich in (...) seinen Berliner Jahren für eine autoritäre Transformation der Verfassung ein, die neben der äußersten Linken auch die äußerste Rechte von der Macht fernhalten sollte. Das geschah nicht nur in der Form der verfassungsrechtlichen Expertise für Regierungskreise, sondern auch durch publizistische Interventionen, bei denen der in Bonn gebildete Schülerkreis Schmitts eine tragende Rolle spielte. Zeitschriften wie Der Ring und das Deutsche Volkstum standen in der Endkrise der Weimarer Republik zeitweise vollständig unter dem Einfluß Schmittscher Ideen, und auch im breiteren Umfeld waren sie präsent, etwa in den Organen der Bündischen Jugend oder in der vielgelesenen Tat. Selbst Kritiker Schmitts konnten sich diesem Einfluß nicht entziehen, wie am Beispiel Otto Kirchheimers, Franz Neumanns, Ernst Fraenkels, Waldemar Gurians und anderer gezeigt wird. Gestützt auf nachgelassene Korrespondenzen und eine umfassende Auswertung der zeitgenössischen Publizistik gibt das Buch Aufschluß über Schmitts Netzwerk und seine politischen Strategien. (shrink)
This article explores Carl Schmitt's concept of the enemy against the backcloth of the international agenda from the 1920s into the Second World War. More specifically it argues for his abiding antipathy to the Anglo-Saxon powers. It identifies his concern with the right of intervention and his strategies for deflecting claims of a right of intervention in the affairs of states. It also explores the tension between his concept of domestic order and international order in the late 1930s and (...) suggests that his attempt to reconcile the two fails. It concludes by suggesting that the rhetorical arguments he deployed are instructive, for they remain the favourite resort of those who have engaged in a continuous and manifest abuse of sovereignty. (shrink)
The strict-tolerant approach to paradox promises to erect theories of naïve truth and tolerant vagueness on the firm bedrock of classical logic. We assess the extent to which this claim is founded. Building on some results by Girard we show that the usual proof-theoretic formulation of propositional ST in terms of the classical sequent calculus without primitive Cut is incomplete with respect to ST-valid metainferences, and exhibit a complete calculus for the same class of metainferences. We also argue that the (...) latter calculus, far from coinciding with classical logic, is a close kin of Priest’s LP. (shrink)
In the context of the recent proliferation of nationalisms and enemy figures, this paper agrees with the desirability of retaining some of the explanatory and motivational potential of an agonistic account of politics, but gives reasons not to accept too much of Carl Schmitt's account of citizenship. The claim as to the necessarily antagonistic exclusion of concrete others can be supported neither on its own terms nor on Derridian grounds, as Chantal Mouffe, in particular, attempts to do. I then (...) indicate that différance may nonetheless account for strong (but not necessary) tendencies toward exclusion as well as for the intrinsic contradictions of liberal universalism. (shrink)
This is the first full-length study in English of twentieth-century Germany's most influential authoritarian right-wing political theorist, Carl Schmitt, that focuses on the central place of his attack on the liberal rule of law. This is also the first book in any language to devote substantial attention to Schmitt's subterranean influence on some of the most important voices in political thought in the United States after 1945.
In the case of Schmitt, much of recent scholarship in English has overlooked or even denied the radical conservatism of his Weimar writings. The approach pursued here will, I hope, put his works into more historically accurate perspective. In the case of both Freyer and Schmitt, their intellectual and rhetorical gifts helped undermine support for liberal democracy in Germany, and indeed were intended to do so; this paper, however, focuses on their social and political thought rather than on (...) their influence. (shrink)
The concept of the exception has heavily shaped modern political theory. In modernity, Kierkegaard was one of the first philosophers to propound the exception as a facilitator of metaphysical transcendence. Merging Kierkegaard’s metaphysical exception with early modern political theorist Jean Bodin’s theory of sovereignty, Carl Schmitt introduced sovereignty to metaphysics. He thereby made an early modern concept usable in a post-metaphysical world. This essay carries Schmitt’s appropriation one step further. Drawing on Walter Benjamin’s replacement of transcendental metaphysics with (...) contingent creaturehood, it reintroduces the anti-foundationalist concept of repetition that was implicit in Kierkegaard’s paradigm but which was not made lucid until Benjamin crafted from the Schmittian exception a vision of political life grounded in creaturely existence. -/- . (shrink)
Alston begins his exposition of the realist conception of truth in chapter 1 with a roughly Aristotelian formulation: “A statement is true if and only if what the statement says to be the case actually is the case”. This condition has the drawback that it defines truth via illocutionary acts; yet, as Alston argues, propositions are the most basic truth-bearers. Alston therefore turns to the universalized T-schema for a condition that characterizes the truth of propositions without mentioning illocutionary acts: “ (...) The proposition that p is true iff p”, where “” is a substitutional rather than objectual quantifier over propositions. Later Alston avers that this account of truth is equivalent to another that is overtly realist in characterizing truth in terms of facts, a minimalist correspondence theory: “ The proposition that p is true iff it is a fact that p”. (shrink)
Though he has become known to his detractors as a theorist who has replaced rational discourse with pure power in his theory of the decision, Carl Schmitt's notion of politics is, on a fundamental level, culturally and ethically based. This cultural and ethical conception of politics permeates his work, not only in texts about explicitly cultural issues, such as his 1916 study of Theodor Däubler's Expressionist Nordlicht or his meditation on the connection between politics and art in Shakespeare in (...) Hamlet oder Hekuba,1 but also in Political Theology, one of the key texts of his theory of decisionism. While commentators…. (shrink)