Download Carl Schmitt and Leo Strauss: The Hidden Dialogue by Heinrich Meier PDF

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By Heinrich Meier

Carl Schmitt used to be the main recognized and arguable defender of political theology within the 20th century. yet in his best-known paintings, the idea that of the Political, issued in 1927, 1932, and 1933, political concerns led him to hide the dependence of his political idea on his religion in divine revelation. In 1932 Leo Strauss released a serious assessment of idea that initiated an exceptionally refined alternate among Schmitt and Strauss concerning Schmitt’s critique of liberalism. even though Schmitt by no means responded Strauss publicly, within the 3rd version of his booklet he replaced a few passages in line with Strauss’s criticisms. Now, during this dependent translation via J. Harvey Lomax, Heinrich Meier indicates us what the amazing discussion among Schmitt and Strauss finds in regards to the improvement of those seminal thinkers.Meier contends that their trade in basic terms ostensibly revolves round liberalism. At its center, their “hidden discussion” explores the basic clash among political theology and political philosophy, among revelation and reason­and eventually, the important query of the way people should reside their lives. “Heinrich Meier’s therapy of Schmitt’s writings is morally analytical with out moralizing, a awesome feat in view of Schmitt’s earlier. He needs to appreciate what Schmitt used to be after instead of to brush off him out of hand or bowdlerize his strategies for modern political purposes.”—Mark Lilla, manhattan assessment of Books 

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Extra info for Carl Schmitt and Leo Strauss: The Hidden Dialogue

Sample text

Should it not be true of holy wars and cru26. 32, 33, 38, 46; cf. 29, 30-32, 42, 43, 47, 53, 54. 26 I C A R L S C H MITT AND LED S T R A U S S sades what is true of wars that make the enemy " into an inhuman monster that must not only be fended off, but definitively annihilated," that "thus" (here he departs from the first edition) "is no longer only an enemy to be driven back into his own boundaries " ? With the concept of inten­ sity, Schmitt leaves "pure politics" behind, but by no means does he desire to forgo the advantages of his previ­ ous rhetoric.

Strauss's radical interpreta­ tion of what Schmitt not so much engages in as strives for contains this unspoken criticism: that the protagonist of the political achieves complete clarity neither about the position of the enemy nor about the presuppositions and requirements of his own project; and indeed, perhaps most surprisingly, that Schmitt did not recognize his most impor­ tant theoretical antipode as an antipode at all. Strauss ap­ pends a footnote, the only footnote in the whole essay, to the statement that Schmitt returns, contrary to liberalism, to its author in order to strike at the root of liberalism in Hobbes; in that footnote he calls attention to the fact that Schmitt, in the first edition of the Concept of the Political, had described Hobbes as "by far the greatest and perhaps the sole truly systematic political thinker" (1, 25).

Zwischenbemerktmg zmn Begriff des Politischen (Berlin, 1963), p. 94. However things may stand concerning the merits of Schmitt's later differentiation between the "conventional," the "real," and the "absolute enemy" with regard to the theory of war, that later differentiation is not decisive for the concept of the political. It is in no way demanded, and certainly not given a foundation, by the concept of the political. And the talk of the "especially intensive and inhu man wars" that, going beyo11d the political, degrade the enemy, also gains no su bstance by means of this distinction so long as the concept of intensity as constiwtive of the political is not itself abandoned.

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