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Micronations are incredibly diverse. Some micronations are speculative experiments in statehood, perhaps utopian examples of how nations could or should be organised. Others are established for personal entertainment, fantasy or artistic expression. Where a town or small community supports the idea, micronationalism can even promote tourism and deliver an economic boost to a region. Others still are formed to challenge and critique statehood and sovereign authority or as a way to make quick money by fair or foul means. Some of the more enduring micronations emerge as personal grievances take on a political dimension as anger, frustration and desperation push individuals into taking extreme action. In this chapter, we undertake a survey of some of the most prominent micronations by focusing on the myriad of (often overlapping) motivations for their creation. This study complements our definition and conceptual framework, explored in the previous chapter, by expanding our knowledge of the justifications provided for micronations and the assorted rationales that underlie their assertions of statehood.
Chapter 4 critiques contemporary Islamic economics as a disciplinary synthesis of Western economics and basic Islamic tenets. The first part of the chapter discusses the intricate relation between Sharīʿa and the field of economics in Islam by critiquing the legal premise of contemporary Islamic economics. The second part critically examines the Islamic economic project’s epistemology and methodology, and the amalgamation of the two epistemic systems: Islamic conceptual history and Western economic tradition. This composition provided Islamic economics with a hybrid framework, consisting of Islamic ethics and a neoclassical economic outlook.
Almost every reader’s first encounter with Kant comes through either the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals or the Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics, but while the former work occupies a central and revered place in the philosophical canon, the Prolegomena is often viewed much more ambivalently.
The Prolegomena is often dismissed as Kant's failed attempt to popularize his philosophy, but as the essays collected here show, there is much to be gained from a careful study of the work. The essays explore the distinctive features of the Prolegomena, including Kant's discussion of philosophical methodology, his critical idealism, the nature of experience, his engagement with Hume, the nature of the self, the relation between geometry and physics, and what we cognize about God. Newly commissioned for this volume, the essays as a whole offer sophisticated and innovative interpretations of the Prolegomena, and cast Kant's critical philosophy in a new light.
International lawyers are very familiar with the claim that international law has taken a turn to history since the tumultuous decade of the 1990s. As debates over the interpretation of past texts, events, and practices have intensified in the context of a rapidly changing field of international law, history has been presented as offering a silver bullet. While international lawyers are criticised for instrumentalising or mythologising the past in ways that are biased, partisan, and political, professional historical methods are presented as offering an objective, impartial, and evidence-based alternative. This chapter outlines the cross-disciplinary hermeneutic of suspicion that has structured the resulting debates over how the history of international law is understood. It sets out the assumptions underpinning that debate and explores its consequences for the way lawyers and historians represent the nature, functions, potential, role, and limits of international law.
Over the past 15 years, the European Commission has poured millions of euros into Research and Development in border security. This article looks at the devices that are funded under this scheme. To this end, it applies Multiple Correspondence Analysis to a database of 41 projects funded under 7th Framework Programme. This method of data visualisation unearths the deep patterns of opposition that run across the sociotechnical universe where European borders are designed and created. We identify three rationalities of power at play: territorial surveillance aimed at detecting rare events in remote areas, policing of dense human flows by sorting out the benign from the dangerous, and finally global dataveillance of cargo on the move. Instead of trends towards either the hardening of borders or their virtualisation, we, therefore, find multiple rationalities of power simultaneously redefining the modalities of control at EU borders. A second finding shows where precisely critical actors are located in this sociotechnical universe and indicates that the structure of European R&D in border security keeps irregularised migrants off their radars. This finding calls for more caution as to the possibility to effectively put critique to work within the context of EU R&D.
This chapter examines the main trends in the international parodies of Ibsen from the late 1880s and ’90s, both those intended primarily for print and for the stage. Proceeding from Margaret Rose’s model of parody as ‘comic refunctioning of preformed linguistic or artistic material’, the chapter examines the parodic treatments of Ibsen as a retrospective measure of his reception context: where his contemporaries in Great Britain, Norway, Sweden and Germany saw him crossing the lines of conventional drama, lines that the respondents either were invested in defending or simply calling attention to in order to understand through parodic distortion the contributions Ibsen was making. Two areas that provoked repeated parodic treatment had to do with varying international perceptions of the dramas’ cultural specificity and their generic indeterminacy.
The Russian radical émigré Alexander Herzen left three works that focus on 1848: two volumes of essays, and his great autobiography, My Past and Thoughts, in which his life story pivots around 1848. Herzen, who emigrated in 1847, describes himself as arriving in Paris as pilgrims once arrived at Jerusalem. By his own account, he rapidly discovered the fundamentally bourgeois character of French civilization and then witnessed the crushing of the June insurrection. The political debacle was compounded by personal tragedy – the deaths of his mother and son and his wife Natalie. In all his writings we find Herzen seeking a perspective from which the collapse of his pre-revolutionary ideals would make sense. His most powerful essays are jeremiads lamenting his broken dreams, replaying the June insurrection, and reflecting on the powerlessness of historical actors to change the world. Attempting to explain what went wrong in 1848, Herzen insists on the inability of European radicals to get beyond models drawn from the first French Revolution or Christianity or both. For Herzen, as for Proudhon (whom he admired) and Marx (whom he did not admire) the fatal weakness of the left lay in its inability to emancipate itself from memories that served to justify and cloak the return of repressive centralized government.
Millán Brusslan focusses upon what was unique about Schlegel’s philosophical lens, a lens uniquely suited to capturing social injustice. She undertakes an examination of the roots of Schlegel’s philosophical pluralism and his project of blending philosophy and poetry. She argues that Schlegel’s push to blend disciplines was part of a project to reform our approach to truth, a topic explored in Sections One and Two of the paper. The new philosophical lens developed by Schlegel allowed him to see what other thinkers overlooked and to address urgent social issues that needed attention, especially the exclusion of women from philosophy. The reforming spirit of Schlegel’s thought is most systematically developed in an essay on Kant’s Perpetual Peace, and so in Sections Three and Four of the paper, Kant’s essay and Schlegel’s critique of it are analyzed to highlight the political implications of Schlegel’s thought.
Affective states and their representational forms have been as crucial to critical constructions of modernism as to the writing we associate with its multiple movements, moments, and legacies. At the confluence of represented feeling and registrations of affect, ambitions of otherwise historically distinct writers come into conversation. To see how this conversation might enhance modernist studies’ critical-affective literacies, this chapter follows a transhistorical rather than a discretely periodized arc, gauging the conceptual challenges and interpretive opportunities that come with close reading affective representation as it interlaces modernism’s stylistic aspirations and political valences. It considers how changing disciplinary priorities are transforming the ways in which modernist studies addresses affect’s critical purchase. And it encompasses both early twentieth- and twenty-first-century figures (Virginia Woolf, Wyndham Lewis, Storm Jameson, Ian McEwan, and Rachael Cusk) to explore analytical synergies between vocabularies of feeling and evolving strategies of experimental form.
After summarizing the content of my book, Kant and Mysticism (Palmquist 2019), I warn against four preliminary misconceptions. The book never argues that Kant viewed himself as a mystic, fully acknowledges Kant’s negative view of mysticism, offers no comprehensive overview of mystical traditions, and aims to initiate a dialogue, not to have the final word. I then respond to the foregoing essays by the five critics.
Many recent commentators have noticed how Adorno, in his late works, borrows Kant’s definition of enlightenment to define key areas of his own critical practice. These discussions, however, have failed to notice how these late borrowings present an image of Kant’s enlightenment which is diametrically opposed to his previous discussions. By tracing the development of Adorno’s engagement with Kant’s essay, I discover Adorno deliberately sublating Kant’s definition as to enable its incorporation into his own works. Further, the article will examine some problems which appear to arise for Adorno when borrowing Kant’s definition of enlightenment in his late works, which coalesce around the topics of negativism and the prospects for societal change.
This short final chapter summarises the main arguments of the book with a particular emphasis on the law’s indeterminacy and its relation to structural bias. The author argues that apart from evidencing the law’s total openness, the constant oscillation of ‘civilisation’ between ‘improvement’ and ‘biology’ in fact evidences its links to the contradictions of global capitalism. As a consequence, the structured indeterminacy of ‘civilisation’ can be useful to actors who accept the basic desirability of capitalism, but it can be profoundly damaging to radical projects.
Chapter 7 analyzes the Appendix to the Transcendental Analytic entitled “On the Amphiboly of the Concepts of Reflection.” Using Leibniz’s monadology as a prism, Kant here seeks to account for the ultimate premises of his critique and intended reform of metaphysics. More specifically, the chapter conceives of this critique as a variety of transcendental reflection that is guided by four pairs of concepts, including sameness and difference. In order to contextualize this account, the chapter briefly discusses Wolff’s and Baumgarten’s treatment of these concepts. Commentators generally assume that the activity called transcendental reflection is carried out in the Critique of Pure Reason alone. The chapter argues, by contrast, that Kant distinguishes the version of transcendental reflection that informs the ontology of his predecessors from the critical version enacted in the Critique. On this basis, it outlines Kant’s understanding of the difference between a Leibnizian employment of the concepts of reflection and his own.
The second chapter seeks to clarify how Kant in the late 1760s and early 1770s came to conceive of the aim and main arguments of what was to become the Critique of Pure Reason. It focuses in particular on Kant’s evolving understanding of the act of critique. The heart of the chapter consists in an analysis of the Inaugural Dissertation. Challenging the prevailing view, the chapter highlights the critical impetus of the treatise by arguing that the specific criterion it employs to curb the ambitions of metaphysics – intellectual purity – is directed against an assumption common to Wolff, Crusius, and early post-Leibnizian philosophy in general. Moreover, it puts into perspective the alleged break between the Dissertation and the Critique by arguing that this early instance of critique is preserved in the Critique of Pure Reason. The chapter argues that Kant in this work introduces a new form of critique by arguing that any a priori cognition of objects necessarily rests on pure intuition.
Scholarly debates on the Critique of Pure Reason have largely been shaped by epistemological questions. Challenging this prevailing trend, Kant's Reform of Metaphysics is the first book-length study to interpret Kant's Critique in view of his efforts to turn Christian Wolff's highly influential metaphysics into a science. Karin de Boer situates Kant's pivotal work in the context of eighteenth-century German philosophy, traces the development of Kant's conception of critique, and offers fresh and in-depth analyses of key parts of the Critique of Pure Reason, including the Transcendental Deduction, the Schematism Chapter, the Appendix to the Transcendental Analytic, and the Architectonic. The book not only brings out the coherence of Kant's project, but also reconstructs the outline of the 'system of pure reason' for which the Critique was to pave the way, but that never saw the light.
Most studies on violence in the Hebrew Bible focus on the question of how modern readers should approach the problem. But they fail to ask how the Hebrew Bible thinks about that problem in the first place. In this work, Matthew J. Lynch examines four key ways that writers of the Hebrew Bible conceptualize and critique acts of violence: violence as an ecological problem; violence as a moral problem; violence as a judicial problem; violence as a purity problem. These four 'grammars of violence' help us interpret crucial biblical texts where violence plays a lead role, like Genesis 4-9. Lynch's volume also offers readers ways to examine cultural continuity and the distinctiveness of biblical conceptions of violence.
After providing a brief overview of Marcus Willaschek's Kant on the Sources of Metaphysics, I critically reconstruct his account of ‘transcendental realism’ and the role that it plays in the dramatic narrative of the Critique of Pure Reason. I then lay out in detail how Willaschek generates and evaluates various versions of transcendental realism and raise some concerns about each. Next, I look at precisely how Willaschek's Kant thinks we can avoid applying the ‘supreme’ dialectical principle (for every conditioned there is a totality of conditions which is unconditioned) to the domain of appearances. Finally, I call into question Willaschek's efforts to appropriate the lessons of the Transcendental Dialectic without following Kant into transcendental idealism.
In her response to the forum on Immediations: The Humanitarian Impulse in Documentary (Duke University Press, 2017), author Pooja Rangan takes up a range of issues that emerge in responses to her book by Rey Chow, Lucas Hilderbrand, Ragini Tharoor Srinivasan, and Naomi Waltham-Smith. Rangan’s response revolves around the question: Has reflexivity become untimely? What is the role of reflexive critique in a time of existential crisis? In answering this question, Rangan argues that alongside a “non-naive commitment to a notion of the truth” (a topic that emerges in several of the responses as well as in recent literature on documentary), documentary scholars must pursue a radically uncynical commitment to reflexivity. Redefining reflexivity as a form of “restoration work” (Eli Clare) or “wake work” (Christina Sharpe), Rangan traces the shared investments of documentary critique and contemporary analyses of disability and Black existence.
Shortly after emerging in the 1980s, critical gerontology became a recognised part of mainstream gerontology. Under the umbrella of ‘critical gerontology’ sits a number of orientations that draw attention to how ageing is socially located, while foregrounding the importance of values in ageing research. Nevertheless, as critical gerontology is not a clearly defined field or orientation, inconsistencies in the use of ‘critique’ among critical gerontologists has been fermenting internal tensions. In this paper we draw on recent debates on critique as a form of discourse that aims to criticise a deficient social order with the aim of helping to bring about a good society, to identify four discourses of critique. These include the discourses of immanent critique and of transcendent critique, critique that focuses on tensions between these two, and critique that builds on constructive combinations of immanence and transcendence. We add to these an extra level of depth by distinguishing how critical discourse is applied in each case. We use this framework to identify the discourses of critique deployed in variants of critical gerontology. Here, we distinguish political economic, lifecourse, humanistic and culturalist approaches within critical gerontology and assess how each of these applies a discourse of critique. We find that these gerontological perspectives draw on a variety of discourses of critique and make use of varying degrees of engagement with critical discourse. The paper concludes by discussing how critical gerontology may develop as a reflective forum commenting on and integrating insights offered by its own varieties of critique and connecting these with macro-social analyses.