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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:
In The Fragility of Things , eminent theorist William E. Connolly focuses on several self-organizing ecologies that help to constitute our world. These interacting geological, biological, and climate systems, some of which harbor creative capacities, are depreciated by that brand of neoliberalism that confines self-organization to economic markets and equates the latter with impersonal rationality. Neoliberal practice thus fails to address the fragilities it exacerbates. Engaging a diverse range of thinkers, from Friedrich Hayek, Michel Foucault, Hesiod, and Immanuel Kant to Voltaire, Terrence Deacon, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Alfred North Whitehead, Connolly brings the sense of fragility alive as he rethinks the idea of freedom. Urging the Left not to abandon the state but to reclaim it, he also explores scales of politics below and beyond the state. The contemporary response to fragility requires a militant pluralist assemblage composed of those sharing affinities of spirituality across differences of creed, class, gender, sexual orientation, and ethnicity.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Description based on print version record.
Reviews provided by Syndetics
CHOICE ReviewConnolly (Johns Hopkins Univ.) ponders the fragile condition of the neoliberal state as it teeters precariously on the precipice of environmental, technological, linguistic, and other challenges. His ponderous prose carefully dissects the myriad yet tenuous relations upon which the survival of neoliberalism depends. Appearing to shore up these relations, Connolly imbues his own fragile turgidity with stumbling jargon, including "imbrications," "human force fields," and "teleodynamism," but in fact he critiques neoliberalism for its weak theoretical foundation and its destructive impact on virtually all aspects of humankind. Connolly's critique consists of four chapters with each followed by a somewhat related "interlude." His topics range from the neoliberal ideological conflict between Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman to Immanuel Kant's apodictic reasoning and Alfred North Whitehead's process thinking, from Hesiod's theogony and the emergence of the universe to Augustine's cosmology and the emergence of moral man and time. From Friedrich Nietzsche and Karl Marx to Michel Foucault and Jurgen Habermas and a host of other political thinkers, philosophers, and scientists, Connolly traverses select dimensions of reality to create his own explanatory universe that reveals the disastrous state of the human experience and the possibility of a democratic remedy. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate and research collections. J. R. Pottenger University of Alabama in Huntsville
Author notes provided by Syndetics
William E. Connolly is Krieger-Eisenhower Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University. His most recent books include A World of Becoming ; Capitalism and Christianity, American Style ; and Pluralism , all also published by Duke University Press. He is a former editor of Political Theory and a founder of the journal theory & event . His classic study The Terms of Political Discourse won the Benjamin Lippincott Award in 1999.