The Logic of Sovereignty

Jacques Lezra

in Wild Materialism

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print September 2010 | ISBN: 9780823232352
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235889 | DOI:
The Logic of Sovereignty

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This chapter focuses on what Giorgio Agamben calls the logical “zone of indistinction” on which sovereign decisions stand. The scenes here—one historically documented, the so-called conflict of Louvain regarding future contingents, between the rhetorician Pierre de Rivo and the theologian Henri de Zomeren (the conflict stretches roughly from 1465 to 1479); the other perhaps mythological, Archbishop of Toledo Juan Martínez Guijarro's ill-fated 1546 effort to demystify the legend of the so-called Cave of Hercules, as narrated in 1671 by Cristóbal de Lozano—provide a complex picture of the strange logic of sovereignty and of the logic of historiography that seeks to account for its emergence and “modern” characteristics. They are also linked documents in the earliest conceptualization of the relation between governance, logic, and the experience of terror.

Keywords: Giorgio Agamben; zone; indistinction; Pierre de Rivo; Henri de Zomeren; Juan Martínez Guijarro; Cristóbal de Lozano; logic; sovereignty; terror

Chapter.  9756 words. 

Subjects: Social and Political Philosophy

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