Political philosophy (p) (2012/2013)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Olivia Guaraldo
Olivia Guaraldo
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Semestrino IIA dal Feb 25, 2013 al Apr 20, 2013.

Lesson timetable

Learning outcomes

The course aims at introducing and discussing some of the major issues concerning political philosophy


Prerequisites: basic knowledge of the history of philosophy.

Content of course: Community and vulnerability: politics beyond violence.
The course will deal primarily with an analysis of the philosophical-political roots of the strict relationship between political agency and the dimension of violent conflict. Through the reading of authors belonging to different traditions, aim of the course is to underline and criticize a certain tendency, in the modern tradition of political thought – be it that of ‘order’ or that of ‘subversion’ - of postulating the human as ‘naturally’ aggressive and violent. The critique of such a tradition will bring into play different modes of understanding human action and politics, and their relationship with violence and conflict. The lens through which we will try to read the tradition is gender sensitive and rooted in an “ontology of vulnerability”.

Bibliography: Thomas Hobbes, Leviatano, BUR, Milano 2011, capp. XIII-XXI, pp. 127-236.
Georges Bataille, Nietzsche e i fascisti (1936), in Id., La congiura sacra. Acéphale: la rivista, Bollati Boringhieri, Torino 1997, pp.13-29.
Hobbes and Bataille will be available as photocopies in the copies-shops around the university.
Hannah Arendt, Sulla violenza, Guanda, Milano 2008.
Olivia Guaraldo, Comunità e vulnerabilità: per una critica politica della violenza, Pisa, ETS 2012.

Choose a reading of one of the following works:
Sofocle, Antigone (qualsiasi edizione).
Euripide, Supplici (qualsiasi edizione).
Henry James, L’altare dei morti, Adelphi, Milano 1988. (in English: The Altar of the Dead)

Taeching methods: lectures.

Assessment methods and criteria

Oral examination