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The Notion of Authority by Alexandre Kojeve

The Notion of Authority

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The Notion of Authority by Alexandre Kojeve
Paperback $19.95
Oct 20, 2020 | ISBN 9781788739610

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  • Oct 20, 2020 | ISBN 9781788739610

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  • Aug 19, 2014 | ISBN 9781781680957

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“Kojève was a magician of thought … undoubtedly, he was the inventor of the last grand narrative of philosophy and history, of which the neo-conservative ideologue Fukuyama was but a mediocre imitator.”
—Pierre Macherey

“Kojève spoke of Hegel’s religious philosophy, the phenomenology of Spirit, master and slave, the struggle for prestige, the in-itself, the for-itself, nothingness, projects, the human essence as revealed in the struggle onto death and in the transformation of error into truth. Strange theses for a world beleaguered by fascism!”
—Louis Althusser

“Alexandre Kojève’s originality and courage, it must be said, is to have perceived the impossibility of going any further, the necessity, consequently, of renouncing the creation of an original philosophy and, thereby, the interminable starting-over which is the avowal of the vanity of thought.”
—Georges Bataille

“Kojève’s lectures made a deep impression on his listeners—to more various and influential effect than probably any others in France this century.”
—Perry Anderson

“Alexandre Kojève … is one of the most notable Russian thinkers of the twentieth century … the lectures represent an exceedingly important (and tendentious) interpretation of Hegel, if not an independent philosophical view in the guise of a seemingly objective scholarly commentary.”
—Jeff Love, Slavic and East European Journal

“Bourgeois domination represented the arrival of the bourgeois end of history, in the form of a permanent present. Authority is disconnected from all its temporal support, having nothing left to offer. Kojève thus foresees the inauguration of simulacrum as the justification of authority. Kojève left an open letter that allows for ample discussion. And for as long as a determination of the coming times still has a role to play, a reprise of Kojève’s text will remain timely.”
—Jorge Varela, Radical Philosophy

“In recent decades, Kojève’s voluminous manuscripts and papers, held at the Bibliothèque nationale in Paris, have become available to researchers. Hager Weslati is among a new generation of scholars busily exploiting this material. A gramophone cannot possess authority, nor can a subject under hypnosis be said to respond to it—both examples are Kojève’s. Despite its apparent conservatism, there is an underlying revolutionary message. Discussions of Jacques Rousseau’s notion of the general will, the division of powers, the problem of tradition, and the impossibility of the political trial will all be stimulating for any political theorist.”
—Eric Brandom, German Studies Review

“This English translation of Alexander Kojève’s The Notion of Authority is an important addition to philosophical studies of authority and an essential text for understanding Kojève’s political thought. While Arendt and Marcuse favored a negative definition of authority, Kojève sought a positive definition—one that would be ultimately usable in his political present during WWII. The era of bourgeois domination commences in a fascination with only the present (this is why concerns of food and sex are paramount to the bourgeoisie). However, ultimately this present fails because it does not have a past or a future.”
—Daniel Tutt, Philosophy Now

“Through its pursuit of increasing depoliticization, neoliberalism undermines its own sources of political legitimacy and ultimately reduces human relations to the application of force in the service of individual ends. Kojève’s understanding of the nature of authority helps explain the distinctively political aspects of these developments.”
—Adam Adatto Sandel and Julius Krein

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