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The Schmitt Hits the Fan

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Excellent paper by Simon Critchley that I found at pas au-dela. The paper’s on the "Crypto-Schmittianism" of the Bush administration. (Short version of what this means: they know that politics is politics (i.e. is war), (here comes the "crypto" part) but they act as if the political is never political…

(My wife tells me that it was probably from a special faculty seminar
in the wake of the election that went on at the Graduate Faculty of the
New School…)

Not a Schmitt expert. But here’s my question – as Schmittianism ever not been crypto, even in Schmitt’s eyes? Was in an advocate of transparency in all of this?

(Funny – after all that’s been said about Schmitt – like Critchley’s paper, for instance – hard for me to call to mind the tone of the actual works. Is The Concept of the Political descriptive or pragmatic? Why does it have the shimmer in my mind of Machiavelli for the Modern Age.)

Written by adswithoutproducts

December 8, 2004 at 11:42 pm

Posted in Politics

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  1. It’s a good question. I think Schmitt’s general conception of the political is the main problem, though (cf. Derrida’s Politics of Friendship). That is, the idea that war is the fundamental condition of possibility for the political makes all kinds of assumptions, about the sovereignty of the nation-state, etc. To naturalize war, to treat war (defined strictly as armed conflict between sovereign nations) as inevitable and inescapable…is ultimately quite cynical and simplistic.

    Matt

    December 14, 2004 at 12:32 pm


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