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Bios: Biopolitics and Philosophy (Posthumanities) Paperback – April 17, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-0816649907 ISBN-10: 0816649901

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Bios: Biopolitics and Philosophy (Posthumanities) + Immunitas: The Protection and Negation of Life + Communitas: The Origin and Destiny of Community (Cultural Memory in the Present)
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Product Details

  • Series: Posthumanities (Book 4)
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Univ Of Minnesota Press (April 17, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0816649901
  • ISBN-13: 978-0816649907
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #381,189 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Roberto Esposito teaches contemporary philosophy at the Italian Institute for the Human Sciences in Naples. His books include Categorie dell impolitico, Nove pensieri sulla politica, Communitas: orgine e destino della comunità, and Immunitas: protezione e negazione della vita.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Lost Lacanian on September 16, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bios represents Roberto Esposito's introduction to the English speaking world. It is a fresh new take on this concept of biopolitics that his colleague, Giorgio Agamben, has helped make popular. The central concept Esposito presents is "immunity." The idea is that immunization involves introducing the body to a weakened form of an virus in order for the body to produce antibodies. The virus, in this way, becomes incorporated into the body. But immunization taken too far--for example autoimmune disorders--can become deadly. Thus far, Agamben and even Derrida have argued that immunization or biopolitics generally necessarily collapses into this thanatopolitics. Esposito, however, argues that this is not so. Biopolitics, if it is a politics of life, is productive. But only in the first immunity scenario. He holds up as proof the relationship between the mother and the unborn fetus. It seems to me, Esposito's willingness to recognize the positive side of biopolitics is provocative, honest, and refreshing.

The book itself is not as straightforward as its thesis. Esposito is interested in showing how immunity, more than biopolitics itself, runs throughout western thought. He starts with Plato, goes through liberalism, and even discusses Negri and Agamben (although annonymously). Esposito's readings are anything but uninventive. Truly amazing stuff. The highllight I think is his engagement with Foucault himself. His purpose is not to celebrate Foucault as some prophet (as Agamben often does), but rather to point out the deadlock in Foucault's thought--a deadlock that Esposito, predictably, believes immunity can untie.

Another important feature of the book is the geneaology of biopolitics that he gives.
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