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The Empire's New Clothes : Reading Hardt and Negri
Since its publication last year, Empire has come to dominate the academic world, stimulating debate and discussion throughout the humanities, social sciences, and into the mainstream media. The New York Times made outrageous claims about its importance, pointing to the "scholarly commotion" it has caused, and suggesting a book like this comes along only "once every decade or so" (July 7, 2001). Translation rights to Empire have been sold in ten countries already and the question has been raised whether Michael Hardt, one of the two authors, is the next Jacques Derrida. A new theoretical idea has been hitched to the voguish concern over globalization, and Empire describes the new form of sovereignty that has emerged under conditions of globalization ("Empire"); delivers an account of a new emancipatory subject (the "multitude"); and advances a set of empirical claims about the terrain of the processes that have come to be understood as "globalization." It''s also a manifesto of sorts for the revolution in an age of globalization. With pieces by Slavoj Zizek, Ernesto Laclau, and others, Empire''s New Clothes addresses Empire in all its complexity, that is, as a work of legal and political theory that diagnoses our era and urges liberatory action. More precisely, it will set the outlines of the debate as it is emerging around the claims of Empire.
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Taylor & Francis
November 11, 2003
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