“(...) vorrei solo comprendere come è possibile che tanti uomini, tanti paesi, tante città e nazioni tollerino talvolta un solo tiranno, che non ha altro potere che quello che gli danno; che ha il potere di nuocere loro solo finché essi possono sopportarlo; che non potrebbe far loro alcun male, se non quando essi preferiscono sop-portarlo piuttosto che contraddirlo. È davvero sorprendente, e tuttavia così comune che c'è più da dispiacersi che da stupirsi nel vedere milioni e milioni di uomini servire miserevolmente, col collo sotto il giogo, non costretti da una forza più grande, ma perché sembra siano ammaliati e affascinati dal nome solo di uno, di cui non dovrebbero temere la potenza, visto che è solo, né amare le qualità, visto che nei loro confronti è inumano e selvaggio.” Étienne De La Boétie (1530-1563) è stato un uomo politico, scrittore, filosofo e giurista. Ricoprì la carica di consigliere al parlamento di Bordeaux nel periodo degli scontri religiosi in seguito al diffondersi della riforma protestante. Nel 1560 è incaricato di una missione segreta di riconciliazione religiosa presso Caterina de’ Medici. È nota la sua amicizia con Montaigne, il quale la descriverà nei suoi Saggi. Dopo essersi ammalato, a trentatré anni morì tra le braccia dell'amico al quale, col suo testamento, aveva lasciato i propri scritti. Montaigne, seppur con reticenze ed ambiguità, si incaricherà di pubblicare i suoi scritti. Il Discorso sulla servitù volontaria ha visto nella sua storia numerose edizioni clandestine e non, la traduzione che presentiamo è basata sul “Manoscritto di Mesmes” presente nella biblioteca di Montaigne.
Author: Errico Malatesta
Malatesta was an Italian anarchist and writer (1853-1932), who lived much of his life in exile. Originally published in 1891, 'Anarchy' outlines the tenets of the anarchist movement which advocates replacing government (which tends to serve a privileged few) with small self-governing communities run on mutual cooperation.
Democracy in Europe
Author: Luciano Canfora
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
This history traces the development of democracy in Europe from its origins in ancient Greece up to the present day. Considers all the major watersheds in the development of democracy in modern Europe. Describes the rediscovery of Ancient Greek political ideals by intellectuals at the end of the eighteenth century. Examines the twenty-year crisis from 1789 to 1815, when the repercussions of revolution in France were felt across the European continent. Explains how events in France led to the explosion of democratic movements between 1830 and 1848. Compares the different manifestations of democracy within Eastern and Western Europe during the latter half of the nineteenth century. Considers fascism and its consequences for democracy in Europe during the twentieth century. Demonstrates how in the recent past democracy itself has become the object of ideological battles.
Freedom Over Servitude
Author: David Lewis Schaefer
Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group
Examines the relationship between Montaigne's Essays, one of the classic works of the French philosophical and literary traditions, and the writings attributed by Montaigne to his friend, the French "humanist" Etienne de la Boetie.
The 4-Hour Work Week meets Monty Python—the ultimate, entertaining handbook for controlling your work destiny and enjoying yourself along the way Ready to be your own boss? If cash flow forecasts, tax returns, and P&Ls sound horrifying, fear not: help is at hand. Journalist Tom Hogkinson has spent his career advocating for laid-back living, and in Business for Bohemians, he combines practical advice with hilarious anecdotes to create a refreshingly candid guidebook for all of us who aspire to a greater degree of freedom in our working lives. Whether you dream of launching your own graphic design startup or growing your Etsy store into a full-scale operation in your spare time, Business for Bohemians will equip you with the tools to turn your talents into a profitable and enjoyable business. Accounting need no longer be a dark art. You will become a social media maven and a friend of the spreadsheet. You will learn the art of negotiation, how to get paid, and how to decide which clients to take. You will discover that laziness can be a virtue. Above all, you will realize that freedom from the nine-to-five life is achievable—and, with Hodgkinson’s comforting, pragmatic and extremely funny advice at hand, you might even enjoy yourself along the way.
“This book not only depicts dramatically, but at the same time demonstrates by what might be termed a mathematic method, the impossibility of any human creature’s being to others what he is to himself. “If you would like to have an idea of how it is that others see you, so as no longer to have to marvel at the judgments which others pass upon your personality, learn to reflect like the hero of this novel.” LUIGI PIRANDELLO.
Signs and Machines
Author: Maurizio Lazzarato
"Capital is a semiotic operator": this assertion by Félix Guattari is at the heart of Maurizio Lazzarato's Signs and Machines, which asks us to leave behind the logocentrism that still informs so many critical theories. Lazzarato calls instead for a new theory capable of explaining how signs function in the economy, in power apparatuses, and in the production of subjectivity. Moving beyond the dualism of signifier and signified, Signs and Machines shows how signs act as "sign-operators" that enter directly into material flows and into the functioning of machines. Money, the stock market, price differentials, algorithms, and scientific equations and formulas constitute semiotic "motors" that make capitalism's social and technical machines run, bypassing representation and consciousness to produce social subjections and semiotic enslavements. Lazzarato contrasts Deleuze and Guattari's complex semiotics with the political theories of Jacques Rancière, Antonio Negri and Michael Hardt, Paolo Virno, and Judith Butler, for whom language and the public space it opens still play a fundamental role. Lazzarato asks: What are the conditions necessary for political and existential rupture at a time when the production of subjectivity represents the primary and perhaps most important work of capitalism? What are the specific tools required to undo the industrial mass production of subjectivity undertaken by business and the state? What types of organization must we construct for a process of subjectivation that would allow us to escape the hold of social subjection and machinic enslavement? In addressing these questions, Signs and Machines takes on a task that is today more urgent than ever.
Oakeshott’s memorable lectures on the history of political thought, delivered each year at the London School of Economics, will now be available in print for the first time as Volume II of his Selected Writings. Based on manuscripts in the LSE archive for 1966–67, the last year of Oakeshott’s tenure as Professor of Political Science, these thirty lectures deal with Greek, Roman, mediaeval, and modern European political thought in a uniquely accessible manner. Scholars familiar with Oakeshott’s work will recognize his own ideas subtly blended with an exposition carefully crafted for an undergraduate audience; those discovering Oakeshott for the first time will find an account of the subject that remains illuminating and provocative.