The Second Birth: On The Political Beginnings Of Human Existence

Hardcover | November 20, 2015

byTilo SchabertTranslated byJavier Ibáñez-noé

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Most scholars link the origin of politics to the formation of human societies, but in this innovative work, Tilo Schabert takes it even further back: to our very births. Drawing on mythical, philosophical, religious, and political thought from around the globe—including America, Europe, the Middle East, and China—The Second Birth proposes a transhistorical and transcultural theory of politics rooted in political cosmology. With impressive erudition, Schabert explores the physical fundamentals of political life, unveiling a profound new insight: our bodies actually teach us politics.
           
Schabert traces different figurations of power inherent to our singular existence, things such as numbers, time, thought, and desire, showing how they render our lives political ones—and, thus, how politics exists in us individually, long before it plays a role in the establishment of societies and institutions. Through these figurations of power, Schabert argues, we learn how to institute our own government within the political forces that already surround us—to create our own world within the one into which we have been born. In a stunning vision of human agency, this book ultimately sketches a political cosmos in which we are all builders, in which we can be at once political and free. 

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Most scholars link the origin of politics to the formation of human societies, but in this innovative work, Tilo Schabert takes it even further back: to our very births. Drawing on mythical, philosophical, religious, and political thought from around the globe—including America, Europe, the Middle East, and China—The Second Birth propo...

Tilo Schabert is professor emeritus of political science at the University of Erlangen in Germany and has taught at several other institutions around the world. A former secretary general for the International Council for Philosophy and the Humanities at UNESCO, he is the author of many books in several different languages, including, ...
Format:HardcoverDimensions:200 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.9 inPublished:November 20, 2015Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022603805X

ISBN - 13:9780226038056

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Table of Contents

Preface

Introduction
At the Start
In Number
In Body
In Action
In Consciousness
In Grace
In the Divine
In Thought
In Creation
In Eros
In Time
In Law
In Freedom

Epilogue
Acknowledgments
Notes
Index

Editorial Reviews

“This masterly essay in political foundations unfolds in a dialogue with a huge range of Greco-Roman, Islamic, and classic Chinese authors too rich to summarize here, but it has also emerged from a lifetime of keen observation of contemporary politics.”