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By Roberto Esposito

No topic has been extra relevant to overseas philosophical debates than that of neighborhood: from American communitarianism to Habermas's ethic of verbal exchange to the French deconstruction of group within the paintings of Derrida and Nancy. however, in none of those circumstances has the idea that been tested from the point of view of community's unique etymological that means: cum munus. In Communitas: The foundation and future of neighborhood, Roberto Esposito does simply that via an unique counter-history of political philosophy that takes up not just readings of group by means of Hobbes, Rousseau, Kant, Heidegger and Bataille, but in addition through H?lderlin, Nietzsche, Canetti, Arendt, and Sartre. the results of his impressive conceptual and lexical research is an intensive overturning of up to date interpretations of neighborhood. neighborhood is not a estate, neither is it a territory to be separated and defended opposed to those that don't belong to it. quite, it's a void, a debt, a present to the opposite that still reminds us of our constitutive alterity with recognize to ourselves.

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Extra info for Communitas: The Origin and Destiny of Community (Cultural Memory in the Present)

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3 Excursus on Rousseau A question, however, requires a more thorough discussion. It has been said that Rousseau is the first modern thinker of community as well as the first to have constructed a myth of community, the first to think community together with and within its myth in a knot that isn't easy to untie. In what sense? Why in Rousseau is the community always on the point of slipping into the myth of community? An answer, indeed a double response, which enjoys a persuasive simplicity, has for some time been formulated and repeated under various guises.

It is here that we find one of the reasons for Rousseau's continuing exhortation to return to oneself, not to lose oneself, to find oneself again, all of which functions as a counterpoint to the same communitarian texts I referred to earlier. Indeed, it constitutes a unity so close to its proper essence [ilproprio essere] as to protect it from any risk of alienation, exteriorlzation, or estrangement. The I, the ego, the moi must not leave anything of itself outside; it must fill every space that is capable of undermining the fullness of its own existence; block every escape toward the other that doesn't include a return even more decisive to the proprium: "I am whole, 58 Guilt Guilt 59 to survive its own constitutive inconsistency, presence needs to be made "present to" itself as a subject: the subjective consciousness of existing that moves beyond an unreflecting existence by duplicating it.

It is as if the critique of absolutism were continually on the point of giving way to a new mythology of the absolute, of the whole and of the part, of the whole as part and of the part as the whole. Still, our perspective remains too far removed from the question of community. 42 Let's begin with a general formulation that is far too clear-cut: Rousseau is the first thinker of community because he presupposes the subject in its existence and not in thought. Here is the real breaking point with modern philosophy initiated by Descartes, even if Rousseau does take on again formally the same language.

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