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"This reader will be a landmark resource as scholarly engagement with biopolitics continues to expand in the coming years. It brings together in a single volume essential texts in the evolution of thinking about the biopolitical in the wake of the formative thought of Foucault and, later, Agamben. In addition, the selections are framed by a wonderfully nuanced and incisive introduction."—Cary Wolfe, author of Before the Law: Humans and Other Animals in a Biopolitical Frame —
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Michel Foucault gave new and unprecedented meaning to the term "biopolitics" in his 1976 essay "Right of Death and Power over Life." In this anthology, that touchstone piece is followed by essays in which biopolitics is implicitly anticipated as a problem by Hannah Arendt and later altered, critiqued, deconstructed, and refined by major political and social theorists who explicitly engaged with Foucault's ideas. By focusing on the concept of biopolitics, rather than applying it to specific events and phenomena, this Reader provides an enduring framework for assessing the central problematics of modern political thought.
Contributors. Giorgio Agamben, Hannah Arendt, Alain Badiou, Timothy Campbell, Gilles Deleuze, Roberto Esposito, Michel Foucault, Donna Haraway, Michael Hardt, Achille Mbembe, Warren Montag, Antonio Negri, Jacques Rancière, Adam Sitze, Peter Sloterdijk, Paolo Virno, Slavoj Žižek
Timothy Campbell is Professor of Italian Studies and Chair of Romance Studies at Cornell University. He is the author of Wireless Writing in the Age of Marconi.
Adam Sitze is Assistant Professor of Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought at Amherst College. He is the author of The Impossible Machine: A Genealogy of South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission.