The aim of my article is to relate Roberto Esposito’s reflections on Europe to his more recent proposal of instituent thought. I will try to do so by focusing on three theoretical cornerstones of Esposito’s thought: the first concerns the evidence of a link between Europe, philosophy and politics. The second is deconstructive: it highlights the inadequacy of the answers of the most important contemporary ontological-political paradigms to the European crisis, as well as the impossibility of interpreting this crisis through theoretical-political categories such as sovereignty. The third relates more directly to the proposal of a new political ontology, which Esposito defines as instituent thought. Esposito’s discussion of political theology is the central theoretical nucleus of this study. This discussion will focus, in particular, on the category of negation, from which any political ontology that is based on pure affirmativeness or absolute negation is criticized. In his opinion, philosophical theories developed on the basis of these assumptions have proved to be incomplete or ineffective in relation to the current European and global philosophical and political crisis. Esposito therefore perceives the urgent need to propose a line of thought that is neither negatively destituent (post-Heideggerian), nor affirmatively constituent (post-Deleuzian, post-Spinozian), but instituent (neo-Machiavellian), capable of thinking about order through conflict (the affirmative through the negative). Provided that we do not think of the institution statically–in a conservative sense–but dynamically, as constant instituting in which conflict can become an instrument of a politics increasingly inspired by justice.

A political ontology for Europe: Roberto Esposito’s instituent paradigm

Fulco, Rita
2021-01-01

Abstract

The aim of my article is to relate Roberto Esposito’s reflections on Europe to his more recent proposal of instituent thought. I will try to do so by focusing on three theoretical cornerstones of Esposito’s thought: the first concerns the evidence of a link between Europe, philosophy and politics. The second is deconstructive: it highlights the inadequacy of the answers of the most important contemporary ontological-political paradigms to the European crisis, as well as the impossibility of interpreting this crisis through theoretical-political categories such as sovereignty. The third relates more directly to the proposal of a new political ontology, which Esposito defines as instituent thought. Esposito’s discussion of political theology is the central theoretical nucleus of this study. This discussion will focus, in particular, on the category of negation, from which any political ontology that is based on pure affirmativeness or absolute negation is criticized. In his opinion, philosophical theories developed on the basis of these assumptions have proved to be incomplete or ineffective in relation to the current European and global philosophical and political crisis. Esposito therefore perceives the urgent need to propose a line of thought that is neither negatively destituent (post-Heideggerian), nor affirmatively constituent (post-Deleuzian, post-Spinozian), but instituent (neo-Machiavellian), capable of thinking about order through conflict (the affirmative through the negative). Provided that we do not think of the institution statically–in a conservative sense–but dynamically, as constant instituting in which conflict can become an instrument of a politics increasingly inspired by justice.
2021
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11570/3202424
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