Benjamin Martin on European Culture against European Civilization

In this video from the 2014 Telos in Europe Conference, Benjamin Martin talks about his research on the idea of European culture, arguing that its emergence among intellectuals after World War I and its subsequent embrace by the Nazis and Italian Fascists serves as a cautionary historical lesson.

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Russell A. Berman on Telos 168: The West: Its Past and Its Prospects

In this short video, filmed at the recent Telos Conference in L’Aquila, Editor Russell A. Berman talks about the central themes and concerns of Telos 168 (Fall 2014): The West: Its Past and Its Prospects. We have posted Russell’s full introduction here, and you can order your copy of the issue in our online store.

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Carl Schmitt in the Twenty-First Century

Like Spinoza, many liberal thinkers have defined the liberty they promote in terms of the necessity of submitting to the law that guarantees it. This is a unique kind of rule of law, a rule of the “‘politically correct,’ universalist, managerial-liberal” (9) law of contemporary liberals. Both internationally and domestically, this law requires the muscular imposition of questionable political, moral, and economic principles, by means of an insidious and often nauseating bureaucratic, technocratic, mediacratic apparatus, onto largely unwilling publics. Crucially, the freedom championed by such liberals and allegedly secured by their law does not include the freedom to refuse their domination root and branch.

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Gramsci and the Politics of Literary Criticism

As an occasional feature on TELOSscope, we highlight a past Telos article whose critical insights continue to illuminate our thinking and challenge our assumptions. Today, Matt Applegate looks at Arshi Pipa’s “Gramsci as a (Non) Literary Critic” from Telos 57 (Fall 1983).

Arshi Pipa’s “Gramsci as a (Non) Literary Critic” is more than a short biography and description of Antonio Gramsci’s inquiries into literary criticism. It also provokes the reader to meditate on the political conditions of literary criticism as an intellectual practice. Gramsci is a controversial figure in the history of literary criticism for at least two reasons, according to Pipa. First, his political work remains more prominent than his literary criticism. When one thinks of Gramsci as a writer and historical figure, his literary criticism might not even register, given his political writing and influence. Second, Gramsci’s politics serve as the impetus for his intellectual projects, thus also providing potential grounds to dismiss or ignore his aesthetic analyses. To be sure, Gramsci is a controversial political figure. In 1921 Gramsci co-founded and led the Communist Party of Italy in opposition to fascism, and was later arrested by fascist police under Mussolini, ultimately dying in prison in 1937. Perhaps his most famous collection of writings, Prison Notebooks, was completed while he was incarcerated between 1926 and 1937. Yet, it is precisely Gramsci’s controversial style and political will that draw Pipa to his work and allow him to question literary criticism as an enduring intellectual practice.

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Event Reminder: Panel Discussion on Telos 164: Italian Jews and Fascism

On Saturday, October 26, the Telos-Paul Piccone Institute and the Centro Primo Levi will host a panel discussion on Telos 164: Italian Jews and Fascism. The discussion will be held at Casa Italiana Zerilli Marimò, 24 West 12th Street, in New York City, from 1 pm to 4pm. Following the discussion, there will be a cocktail reception that will include Maria Piccone’s delicious “amaretti” cookies, in honor of Telos‘s 45th Anniversary. We hope to see you there!

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Event Announcement: Panel Discussion on Telos 164: Italian Jews and Fascism

On Saturday, October 26, the Telos-Paul Piccone Institute and the Centro Primo Levi will host a panel discussion on Telos 164: Italian Jews and Fascism. The discussion will be held at Casa Italiana Zerilli Marimò, 24 West 12th Street, in New York City, from 1 pm to 4pm. We hope to see you there

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