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House of Lords

CITIZENS TO LORDS – BY ELLEN MEIKSINS WOOD

CITIZENS TO LORDS: A SOCIAL HISTORY OF WESTERN POLITICAL THOUGHT FROM ANTIQUITY TO THE LATE MIDDLE AGES

BY ELLEN MEIKSINS WOOD
NEW IN PAPERBACK: 15TH AUGUST 2011
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“Immensely impressive, bold and erudite … Meiksins Wood‘s conclusions are undeniably nuanced, challenging and important … This book ought to be compulsory reading for us all.” —Times Higher Education Supplement
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A major new history of Western political thought as it evolved through conflict and communities.

In this groundbreaking work, Ellen Meiksins Wood rewrites the history of political theory. She traces the development of the Western tradition from classical antiquity through to the Middle Ages in the perspective of social history—a significant departure not only from the standard abstract history of ideas but also from other contextual methods.

Treating canonical thinkers as passionately engaged human beings, Wood examines their ideas not simply in the context of political languages but as creative responses to the social relations and conflicts of their time and place. She identifies a distinctive relation between property and state in Western history and shows how the canon, while largely the work of members or clients of dominant classes, was shaped by complex interactions among proprietors, labourers and states. Western political theory, Wood argues, owes much of its vigour, and also many ambiguities, to these complex and often contradictory relations.

From the Ancient Greek polis of Plato, Aristotle, Aeschylus and Sophocles, through the Roman Republic of Cicero and the Empire of St Paul and St Augustine, to the medieval world of Averroes, Thomas Aquinas and William of Ockham, Citizens to Lords offers a rich, dynamic exploration of thinkers and ideas that have indelibly stamped our modern world.
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Further praise for CITIZENS TO LORDS:

“A challenging analysis, which successfully integrates theory with historical changes. The clarity of the writing makes her account readily accessible to any reader ready to engage a fresh approach to the history of political theory.” —Sheldon Wolin

“Few historians of comparative political thought are in the same league as Ellen Wood, who surveys the whole sweep of ancient and medieval thinkers with equal magisterial brilliance of insight.”  Professor Paul Cartledge, University of Cambridge

Praise for EMPIRE OF CAPITAL:

“A splendid book.” —Eric Hobsbawm

“The most compelling account yet of imperialism in its current phase.” —Robert Brenner
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Ellen Meiksins Wood, for many years Professor of Political Science at York University, Toronto, is the author of many books, including Democracy Against Capitalism and, with Verso, The Pristine Culture of Capitalism, The Origin of Capitalism, Peasant, Citizen and Slave, Citizens to Lords, Empire of Capital and Liberty and Property.
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ISBN: 9 781 84467 706 1 / $26.95 / £14.99 / $33.50 CAN / Paperback / 256 pages
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For more information about CITIZENS TO LORDS or to buy the book visit: http://www.versobooks.com/books/972-citizens-to-lords
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Academics can request an inspection copy. For further information please go to: http://www.versobooks.com/pg/desk-copies
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Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

A Political Moment

WAITING FOR THE POLITICAL MOMENT

CALL FOR PAPERS
WAITING FOR THE POLITICAL MOMENT

Utrecht & Rotterdam, June 17-19, 2010

‘Hamm: What’s happening?
Clov: Something is taking its course.’
Beckett, Endgame

Over the last decades, several political and cultural theorists have argued that the domain of politics, and even the very idea of the political, has been hollowed out. Politics today appears to have lost its proper status or has been submerged in the more powerful and encompassing infrastructures of late capitalism. Instead of frantically affirming or denying the emptying-out of the political, this conference traces the appropriation of the political by apparatuses of state, church, capitalism and media in modernity to look for ways to reinvigorate it. To do so, the conference focuses on a key concept: the political moment – the moment in which political agency becomes possible, as well as the formative role of the moment in politics.

To get to grips with the political moment we not only need to understand our current moment; we need to have an idea of how it developed over time. Not considering the political moment from an exclusively contemporary point of view, this conference also calls for proposals that focus on the formation of the political in relation to its emptying-out from the late Middle Ages to the present.

Contributions in the form of a 4000 words positioning paper distributed in advance and to be discussed in a seminar setting could address (but are not limited to) the following issues: what is a political moment? What does the emptying-out of the political imply? How has the appropriation of the political by state, religion or media shaped the conditions of possibility of the political? What is the role of the moment in politics?

Confirmed speakers include: Mieke Bal, Bruno Bosteels, Rosi Braidotti, Simon Critchley, Martin van Gelderen, Olivier Marchart, Patchen Markell, Benjamin Noys, and Alberto Toscano.

If you are interested in participating, please send in a 300-words paper proposal and a short résumé of your current research by January 15 2010 to Frans-Willem Korsten, Professor of Literature and Society, Erasmus University Rotterdam, email: korsten@fhk.eur.nl; and/or to Bram Ieven, lecturer in comparative literature at Utrecht University, email: b.k.ieven@uu.nl.

For more information see: http://www.waitingforthepoliticalmoment.org

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Wavering on Ether: http://blogs.myspace.com/glennrikowski