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Agamben and Politics

A Critical Introduction

Sergei Prozorov

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A critical introduction to Giorgio Agamben’s political thought that highlights its affirmative dimension

Tracing how the logic of inoperativity works in the domains of language, law, history and humanity, Agamben and Politics systematically introduces the fundamental concepts of Agamben’s political thought and a critically interprets his insights in the wider context of contemporary philosophy.

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1. All’s Well That Ends Well: Agamben’s Comic Politics
2. The Sabbatical Animal: The Politics of Inoperativity
3. Speaking the Unspeakable: Inoperative Language
4. How to Play with the Law: Inoperative Statehood
5. The Time of the End: Inoperative History
6. Outside of Being: Inoperative Humanity
Conclusion: An Optimist Against All Odds
Bibliography, Index.

About the Author

Sergei Prozorov is Professor of Political Science at the University of Jyväskylä. He is the author of books including The Biopolitics of Stalinism (2016) and Agamben and Politics (2014), also published by Edinburgh University Press. He has published over 30 articles in major international journals. His research interests include political philosophy, theories of democracy and totalitarianism, biopolitics and governance.


Prozorov has provided us with a wide-ranging study of Agamben's work that is both useful and engaging, a study that will surely meet its goal of enticing and emboldening its readers to return to Agamben's own texts with renewed interest and understanding.

- Adam Kotsko, Shimer College, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

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