The Anthropological Paradox: Niches, Micro-worlds and Psychic Dissociation, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

The Anthropological Paradox

Niches, Micro-worlds and Psychic Dissociation, 1st Edition

By Massimo De Carolis

Routledge

100 pages

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Hardback: 9781138281035
pub: 2018-02-13
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Description

This book addresses how the erosion of traditional forms of political association and legal regulation has given rise to a pluralism of "imperfect communities" constantly exposed to the risk of dissolution. These are niches and micro-worlds that are connected through precarious and ambivalent ties. Such a far-reaching transformation affects at one and the same time both our psychic and social identity. The book argues that this phenomenon is linked to the proliferation of new forms of psychic "disorder" – depression, personality disorder, dissociation – typical of hypermodern societies. However, while these can easily turn into genuine disorders, they can also open onto richer forms of identity, more complex than those of the past. Based on this analysis, the book’s main claim is that this dynamic epitomizes a general anthropological paradox – one that has always marked the human animal: humans are bound by their own biological constitution to fend off disorder by drawing the boundaries of artificial niches, and yet they are inclined to expose themselves to unlimited contingency so that they can find a truly suitable environment.

Pursuing a novel understanding of the apparent collapse of traditional juridico-political settings, this book makes the case that the emergence of dissociations at several levels – individual, social, political, legal – does not stem from a lack of political imagination. Rather, it is a situation with which humans are inevitably confronted: a perennial tension between the limited and the unlimited, between the desire to take refuge and the desire to cross borders.

Table of Contents

Preface to the english edition; Introduction; Chapter 1: Niches Chapter 2: Psychopathology of present-day life Chapter 3: The grey area between fact and fictionChapter 4: Different ways of building a world Chapter 5: Anthropology of pluralism

About the Author

Massimo De Carolis is Full Professor of Political Philosophy and Social Philosophy at the University of Salerno, where he is the head of the Laboratory of Studies and Research on Human Nature. Among his most recent books: La vita nell’epoca della sua riproducibilità tecnica (Life in the Age of Its Technological Reproducibility: 2004) and Il rovescio della libertà. Tramonto del neoliberalismo e disagio della civiltà (The Downside of Freedom. The Twilight of Neoliberalism and Civilisation’s Discontent, 2017).

About the Series

Law and Politics

Continental Perspectives

A core legacy of the Continental juridico-political tradition is the methodological commitment to the idea that law and politics are inextricably tied to one another. On the one hand, law has to be studied in the light of the concrete political dynamics, social forces, and societal movements that make law what it is. On the other hand, the analysis of political processes should be coupled with the study of the legal techniques through which politics exerts its effects on social reality.
The series aspires to promote works that use the nexus 'law & politics' as a prism that allows understanding societal dynamics beyond the deep-seated borders separating purely legal from purely political methodologies. It welcomes theoretically informed and empirically grounded analyses that foster the development of theory in the study of juridico-political processes.

The qualifier 'Continental' signifies not so much a geographical or socio-historical feature as a methodological one. The approach that the series aims to promote, regardless of the nationality of prospective authors, materializes at the intersection between the vocabularies and methodologies of legal and political theories. In other words, the starting point of this approach is that the interplay between legal and political processes provides a precious lens to observe and comprehend contemporary societal phenomena.

More specifically, submissions exploring the following themes are welcomed:

  • The relationship between the legal and the political spheres from a theoretical, historical and/or empirical point of view.
  • The transformation of sovereignty.
  • The transformation of the state and the rise of non-state political and organizational structures that break the ties with modern statehood.
  • Exceptionalism and emergency at the domestic and/or the global level.
  • The downfall of conventional juridico-political binaries: public/private, state/civil society, domestic/international, religious/secular and others.
  • Current transformations of formal constitutions and the separation of powers.
  • Issues related to the increasing spread of legal pluralism and global legal pluralism.
  • Strategies and politics of legal elites and the new role of judicial bodies both nationally and internationally.
  • Analyses of key Continental authors who have brought to light the materiality of the law, such as Giorgio Agamben, Hannah Arendt, Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Marcel Gauchet, Antonio Gramsci, Jurgen Habermas, Reinhart Koselleck, Antonio Negri, Carl Schmitt and others.
  • Analyses of key Continental "classics" whose voice is unheard or underrepresented in the Anglophone academic and publishing environment, such as Walter Benjamin, Leon Duguit, Georges Gurvitch, Maurice Hauriou, Hermann Heller, Georg Jellinek, Ernst Junger, Costantino Mortati, Georges Renard, Santi Romano, Rudolf Smend, Simone Weil and others.

This interdisciplinary series welcomes monographs and edited volumes that engage with the conceptual and empirical questions detailed above and discussions of how the contamination of jurisprudential and theoretical-political approaches helps illuminate current national and global processes.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW101000
LAW / Essays
PHI005000
PHILOSOPHY / Ethics & Moral Philosophy
PHI019000
PHILOSOPHY / Political
POL010000
POLITICAL SCIENCE / History & Theory