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Archive for May, 2020

Homer rather than Hegel: On Arendt’s political thinking and its roots in literature

The global intellectual community has long recognized Hannah Arendt as one of the crucial voices of the 20th century. In her 2019 book “Hannah Arendt: Die Kunst, politisch zu denken” (Hannah Arendt: The Art of Thinking Politically), Maike Weißpflug explores what one could call Arendt’s version of political criticism, where ‘the political’, for Arendt, is the “sphere of appearance, of opinion, and plurality”. Yet beyond the purely political dimension, Weißpflug also traces the lasting influence of literature on Arendt’s thought and her relevance to political thinking in the age of the Anthropocene. Not primarily as an academic text, Weißpflug’s book, according to BRB reviewer Mario Clemens, presents to us a Hannah Arendt who can teach us a way of thinking about political problems that has the potential to open up new avenues of thought and counter prevailing wisdom.