The Precarious Dialectic of Border Regimes: On the Relationship between the Construction of Borders and the Dismantling of Democracy in the Trump Era

This entry is part 11 of 26 in the series Vol 6-2021

Abstract: In her book Walled States: Waning Sovereignty (2010), the American political theorist Wendy Brown shows that today’s massive wall-building projects – whether in the United States, Israel, or Europe – are not primarily protective measures but rather must be understood as the expression of a fundamental crisis of the modern state. In her view, the erection of barricades is a desperate act of resistance of national sovereignty against its unavoidable demise in a globalized world. Therefore, according to Brown, the current border regimes represent but a final stage act that reflects the desire for clearly defined identities and must be deciphered as fear of a world that becomes ever more complex.
In my paper, I agree only in part with Brown’s theory of a ‘ruse of reason’ – that the building of border walls signifies, all appearances to the contrary, the demise of the sovereignty of the nation state. As convincing as her analyses may be, the staging of border regimes, which comprises not just the factual control of borders but also the bellicose political rhetoric surrounding the building of walls, is also a consciously used political instrument to transform democratic conditions, legal institutions, and social policy achievements within nation states. In my paper, I probe into this peculiar dialectic between, on the one hand, building walls at the borders and, on the other, dismantling borders of political discourse, both theoretically and by means of empirical examples.
To underpin my argument, I shall first focus on the United States under Donald Trump to show that the concentration on the building of a border wall between the United States and Mexico is accompanied by a weakening of security services vis-à-vis right-wing terror. After that, I shall demonstrate that Sebastian Kurz’s talk of shutting the Balkan route for migrants and shielding Austria from third-country migration implies a focused attack on the social partnership and the welfare state.

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“Tathandlung” e “atto puro”. Realtà e immanenza tra Fichte e Giovanni Gentile

This entry is part 19 of 38 in the series Vol 4-2019

Abstract: Make a comparison between Fichte’s and Giovanni Gentile’s philosophy it’s a difficult task, even if through careful analysis of the central themes of the two authors, this comparison can be made, particularly in reference to the theme of the action: this concept leads in both to the consideration of reality as immanent. This vision of reality, together with the strong moral connotation of their philosophy, makes the task we set ourselves less complicated, and it allows me to affirm how in their thought there are moments of great originality, such as to be able to withstand the challenges of contemporary philosophy, rather than being relegated to a marginal position, which considers them as a moment of transition between Kant’s criticism and Hegel’s idealism. The central theme of this paper will be, therefore, the Fichte’s and Gentile’s personal vision of idealism that springs from the concept of action, which maintains a constant tension between different elements, allowing the production of a reality characterized by a radical transcendental vision, therefore immanent. Later, such immanence, in the development of thought from the theoretical to the praxis, assumes meaning and explicability in a sort of transcendence, and this apparent contradiction will be addressed in the second part of my paper: I try to demonstrate how the two authors can still make an important contribution to contemporary philosophy, especially in relation to metaphysical issues, that in our days are often understood as something anachronistic and not very functional to the development of scientific thought.

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La dialettica interrotta. Riflessioni sul totalitarismo

This entry is part 16 of 38 in the series Vol 4-2019

Abstract: The paper indicates a close theoretical connection between the political totalitarianism and the philosophical mindset of idealism. According to the Hegelian model, idealism tends to an intellectual comprehension of totality (das Ganze); in a similar way to idealism, the twentieth century totalitarianism meant not only knowing but dominating the whole, even with violence. Thus, the paper underlines the idealistic origin of the totalitarian political project. Following the historiographical investigations of Ernst Nolte and the anthropological research of René Girard, this paper analyzes the dialectical relationship that there was between Bolshevism and Nazism: Nazism developed as a response to Bolshevism and was its mimetic copy. However, it is an “interrupted dialectic,” a dialectic without synthesis (Aufhebung): from the ashes of twentieth century totalitarianism Western society has developed an openly democratic, liberal and anti-totalitarian “way of life.”

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La dialettica del “Nulla assoluto”. La ricezione di Hegel nella “Scuola di Kyoto”

This entry is part 9 of 38 in the series Vol 4-2019

Abstract: This paper intends to outline the reception of Hegelian dialectic by the Kyoto School. At the same time, it highlights how this Japanese School has tried to integrate the Hegelian perspective introducing new dialectical systems that have the “absolute nothingness” as their starting point.

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Per una “dialettica della trascendenza”: cristologia e storia nelle Predigten di Schleiermacher sulla Confessione di Augusta

This entry is part 8 of 38 in the series Vol 4-2019

Abstract: The ten sermns on the Confession of August they were kept from Schleiermacher, between the June and the November of 1830, on the occasion of the third centennial of the presentation to the emperor Carlo V of the Confession of August, where he confirmed that ecclesiastical communities, constitute in the German territory following the Reform of I will Lute, they didn’t remove at all him from the dogmatic trinitarian and cristologica of the ancient Church. For Schleiermacher, instead, the document of August it enacts the resumption of the process of spiritual liberation begun by Christ, and is goes lost during the time. Christ is the center, the heart, of the dialectical athletic contest between man and God, and between man and world. The Gospel of Christ enters the world and valorizes the human experience beyond all the forms of thought and to the human experience beyond the same confessional orthodoxies. This contribution intends to proceed in the following way: after a brief historical panning on the Confession of August and the motives that have conducted the preacher of Breslavia to hold well ten sermons on it, we will analyze the content of the sermons and their principal themes, which have as base the whole figure of Christ, the Savior and his/her message. Just the Christ, as Urbild, in comparison to himself and to Vorbild and we, in comparison to us and to our imitatio, it will be to the center of a further reflection that he/she tightly sees connected to the sermons the great systematic work of Schleiermacher: the Glaubenslehre.

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Dialettica e politica da Platone ad Aristotele: il ruolo dell’endossalità nella scienza politica aristotelica

This entry is part 4 of 38 in the series Vol 4-2019

Abstract: On the basis of the definition of Dialectic given by Aristotle in Topics I, 1, endoxality turns out to be a problem that must be placed at the center of attention by scholars.
Through a survey of the characterizations of the endoxa given in the books I and VIII of the Topics and of the use of the endoxic propositions in the Aristotle’s political works, I would like to show that, according to Aristotle, political endoxa are not to be considered exclusively as “thought shared by the majority of the population”, but also as “opinion of the man of value” (the spoudaios or the phronimos), which constitutes the canon for the political choice and action, and therefore the most reliable source of judgments truthful.
This characterization of endoxality in Aristotelian philosophy is what allows us to understand the difference between the endoxa of Aristotle and the Platonic evaluation of simple political doxai.

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