The Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought, Goldsmiths University of London

Research Centre run jointly between the Departments of Sociology and English and Comparative Literature at Goldsmiths University, London

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Giorgio Agamben’s Political Paradigm. Notes on Stasis.

A Contribution by Alberto Toscano (based on CPCT’s “The Ends of Homo Sacer” event from November 2015) to Homo Sacer: A Blog Series at Stanford University Press. 


Read the full article here

Excerpt: From the vantage of the overall montage of the Homo Sacer series, the slim volume Stasis: Civil War as a Political Paradigm would appear to be at once peripheral and interstitial. Unlike any of the other volumes, it consists of two public lectures, rather than a newly crafted text. These lectures were delivered in October 2001 at Princeton, giving their reference to global terrorism a curiously diffracted and belated, though topical, echo. Stasis is situated between State of Exception (2.1) (a concept that is explicitly, if briefly, tied to civil war), and The Sacrament of Language (2.3) and a decimal point away from The Kingdom and the Glory (2.4), with which it entertains more tenuous links: its treatment of the thresholds between oikos and polis prepare possible interrogations on what becomes of these with the Patristic introduction of oikonomia, of divine management, while the tantalising foray into Hobbesian eschatology opens up a different avenue into a critique of the theocratic imagination, and resonates with a passing mention of Hobbes on the oath in Sacrament. Stasis was also published in Italian a few months after the final volume with which Agamben “abandons” the project, The Use of Bodies.

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The Ends of Homo Sacer.

A review in Postmodern Culture of a Roundtable discussion on the work of Giorgio Agamben.

By Christopher Law (CCS/CPCT, graduate affiliate) 


Read the full article here

Excerpt: On November 10, 2015 a group of four scholars of Giorgio Agamben’s work gathered at Goldsmiths, University of London for a roundtable organized by the college’s recently formed Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought (CPCT). Contributing to the event, and representing a diverse array of interests in Agamben’s work, were Jessica Whyte, Benjamin Noys, Jason E. Smith and Alberto Toscano (who, alongside the roundtable chair Julia Ng, acts as co-director of the CPCT). The event was dubbed “The Ends of Homo Sacer,” a title whose most obvious motivation was the recent publication of Agamben’s Stasis: Civil War as a Political Paradigm and of L’uso dei corpi (recently published in English as The Use of Bodies). The former book, originally delivered as two lectures in October 2001, slots into an earlier position in Agamben’s nine-book Homo Sacer series, whilst the latter marks its ostensible termination, if not its completion. As is well known, the series has been published out of the order envisioned by Agamben himself (a confusion to which the delayed publication of Stasis adds, since it displaces a spot previously accorded to The Kingdom and the Glory). Both the elusive ordering of the project and the question of its conclusion provided food for thought throughout the evening; neither problem, needless to say, attained definitive closure.