Citizens to Lords: A Social History of Western Political by Ellen Meiksins Wood

By Ellen Meiksins Wood

During this groundbreaking paintings, Ellen Meiksins wooden rewrites the historical past of political thought. She lines the advance of the Western culture from classical antiquity via to the center a while within the viewpoint of social history—a major departure not just from the normal summary background of rules but additionally from different contextual methods.

Treating canonical thinkers as passionately engaged people, wooden examines their rules now not easily within the context of political languages yet as inventive responses to the social kinfolk and conflicts in their time and position. She identifies a particular relation among estate and country in Western heritage and exhibits how the canon, whereas principally the paintings of contributors or consumers of dominant periods, used to be formed by means of complicated interactions between vendors, labourers and states. Western political conception, wooden argues, owes a lot of its power, and in addition many ambiguities, to those complicated and infrequently contradictory relations.

From the traditional Greek polis of Plato, Aristotle, Aeschylus and Sophocles, during the Roman Republic of Cicero and the Empire of St. Paul and St. Augustine, to the medieval international of Averroes, Thomas Aquinas and William of Ockham, Citizens to Lords bargains a wealthy, dynamic exploration of thinkers and concepts that experience indelibly stamped our glossy world.

“Few historians of comparative political idea are within the comparable league as Ellen wooden, who surveys the total sweep of historical and medieval thinkers with equivalent magisterial brilliance of insight.” —Professor Paul Cartledge, college of Cambridge

“A demanding research, which effectively integrates concept with historic adjustments. The readability of the writing makes her account with ease obtainable to any reader able to interact a clean method of the historical past of political theory.” —Sheldon Wolin

“Meiksins wooden is an extraordinary breed—an educational with the soul of a storyteller. hugely recommended.” —Morning Star

“Immensely notable, daring and erudite ... Meiksins Wood’s conclusions are undeniably nuanced, difficult and demanding ... This booklet should be obligatory studying for us all.” —Times better schooling Supplement

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Additional info for Citizens to Lords: A Social History of Western Political Thought from Antiquity to the Late Middle Ages

Sample text

S’est enlisée”—reemerges in the words we read on the page. The reflexive verb “s’enliser” resonates with the conjugated forms of the verb “to read,” “lire,” suggesting through phonic association that the voice that goes underground also emerges into legibility, into graphic form.  . ) In other words, Césaire makes the disappearance of voice into an occasion for reading.  Never innocent, never untainted by the conditions of its apprenticeship, writing nonetheless does not belong to the “instituteur” or the “prêtre” who first introduces it.

A second language— even if it is that of the colonizer—can be experienced with the senses of the body, experienced even as an erotic object, a point made overtly in the works of Khatibi (and celebrated by his critics) that has not been sufficiently noted (or celebrated) in the works of Negritude. To deny the salience of this visceral experience to the poets of Negritude is at once to exclude them from the modernist moment (when a sensual investment in the grapheme was INTRODUCTION 23 paramount) and to condemn them to playing only one role in culture, that of the griot (oral poet) or conteur (storyteller).

Césaire experienced difficulties finding a publisher for the Cahier but then gained a hearing from the editorial board of Volontés, a review affiliated with the high modernist aesthetics of Eugène Jolas, the publisher of James Joyce’s Work in Progress (Finnegans Wake). Chapter 1 explores this little-known publication history, demonstrating that while the Cahier conformed to the high modernist demand for verbal craft, the poem also advanced this craft by forcing it to accommodate a deeply traumatic empirical predicament.

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