Law's Sacrifice: Approaching the Problem of Sacrifice in Law, Literature, and Philosophy, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Law's Sacrifice

Approaching the Problem of Sacrifice in Law, Literature, and Philosophy, 1st Edition

Edited by Brian W. Nail, Jeffrey A. Ellsworth


232 pages

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Hardback: 9780367180935
pub: 2019-07-31
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This volume examines the relationship between law and sacrifice as a crucial nexus for theorizing the dynamics of creation, destruction, transcendence, and violence within the philosophical and legal discourse of western society.

At a time of populist political unrest, what philosophical and theoretical resources are available for conceptualizing the discontent that seems to emanate from practically every sphere of society? What narrative strategies have been employed within literary, theological, philosophical, and legal discourse to tame or mystify human violence? Engaging with the work of preeminent theorists of sacrifice, such as Georges Bataille, René Girard, Giorgio Agamben, and Jacques Derrida this collection examines from an interdisciplinary perspective the sacrificial logic that characterizes the cultural and political dynamics of law in society.

The book will be of interest to students and scholars in the field of legal theory and philosophy.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Contributing Authors

  1. Introduction: Approaching the Problem of Sacrifice in Law, Literature, and Philosophy
  2. Brian W. Nail

  3. Sacrifice and the Origin of Law
  4. Wolfgang Palaver

  5. Towards a Sacrificial Aneconomy? Georges Bataille and the Aporia of Sacrifice
  6. Marie Chabbert

  7. (Misguided) Self-transcendence and the Imagination of Sacrifice
  8. Arthur Cools

  9. A We Not Modeled on the I, the Law of Law, and Futurity
  10. A. Samuel Kimball

  11. Homo Sacrificus: Sacrificial Economization and Neoliberal Subjectivity
  12. Brian W. Nail

  13. Law, Authority, and the Sovereign Exception: The (Im)possibility of Political Agency
  14. Richard Hajarizadeh

  15. The Gift of Time and the Hour of Sacrifice: A Philosophical-Anthropological Analysis of the Deep Difference Between Political Liberal and Populist Politics
  16. Johan Van der Walt

  17. Sacrificial Liberalism: The Politics of Zeal and its Selective Denial in Rawls’s Political Liberalism
  18. Richard Mailey

  19. The Sacrifice of Law’s Madness

Jeffrey A. Ellsworth

About the Editors

Brian W. Nail, Professor of English, Florida State College at Jacksonville

Jeffrey A. Ellsworth, Assistant Professor of Law and Society, Ramapo College of New Jersey

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / General
LAW / Jurisprudence
LAW / Essays
LAW / Judicial Power
PHILOSOPHY / Political
PHILOSOPHY / Movements / Post-Structuralism
POLITICAL SCIENCE / History & Theory