This book explores the origins of western biopolitics in ancient Greek political thought.
Author: Mika Ojakangas
Category: Political Science
This book explores the origins of western biopolitics in ancient Greek political thought. Ojakangas’s argues that the conception of politics as the regulation of the quantity and quality of population in the name of the security and happiness of the state and its inhabitants is as old as the western political thought itself: the politico-philosophical categories of classical thought, particularly those of Plato and Aristotle, were already biopolitical categories. In their books on politics, Plato and Aristotle do not only deal with all the central topics of biopolitics from the political point of view, but for them these topics are the very keystone of politics and the art of government. Yet although the Western understanding of politics was already biopolitical in classical Greece, the book does not argue that the history of biopolitics would constitute a continuum from antiquity to the twentieth century. Instead Ojakangas argues that the birth of Christianity entailed a crisis of the classical biopolitical rationality, as the majority of classical biopolitical themes concerning the government of men and populations faded away or were outright rejected. It was not until the renaissance of the classical culture and literature – including the translation of Plato’s and Aristotles political works into Latin – that biopolitics became topical again in the West. The book will be of great interest to scholars and students in the field of social and political studies, social and political theory, moral and political philosophy, IR theory, intellectual history, classical studies.
Ojakangas, Mika 2016: On the Greek Origins of Biopolitics: A Reinterpretation of the History of Biopower. Interventions. Routledge, London. Opielka, Michael 2008: Christian foundations of the welfare state: Strong cultural values in ...
Author: Kaius Sinnemäki
Publisher: Suomalaisen Kirjallisuuden Seura
Category: Political Science
This volume analyses the societal legacy of Lutheranism in Finland in broad terms. It contributes to the recent renewed interest in the history of religion in Finland and the Nordic countries by bringing together researchers in history, political science, economics, social psychology, education, linguistics, media studies, and theology to examine the mutual relationship between Lutheranism and society in Finland. The two main foci are (i) the historical effects of the Reformation and its aftermath on societal structures and on national identity, values, linguistic culture, education, and the economy, and (ii) the adaptation of the church – and its theology – to changes in the geo-political and sociocultural context. Important sub-themes include nationalism and religion, the secularization and institutionalization of traditional values, multiple Protestant ethics, and long continuities in history. Overall the book argues that large changes in societies cannot be explained via ‘secular’ factors alone, such as economic development or urbanization, but that factors pertaining to religion provide substantial explanatory power for understanding societal change and the resulting societal structures.
I argue that Arendt's thinking offers an original take on the history of biopolitics, that is, on the way human ... and its origins in the Christian pastorate, and also with Mika Ojakangas's recent reinterpretation of the history of ...
Author: Jussi Backman
Publisher: Oxford University Press
The volume studies, from different perspectives, the relationship between ancient thought and biopolitics, that is, theories, discourses, and practices in which the biological life of human populations becomes the focal point of political government. It thus continues and deepens the critical examination, in recent literature, of Michel Foucault's claim concerning the essentially modern character of biopolitics. The nine contributions comprised in the volume explore and utilize the notions of biopolitics and biopower as conceptual tools for articulating the differences and continuities between antiquity and modernity and for narrating Western intellectual and political history in general. Without committing itself to any particular thesis or approach, the volume evaluates both the relevance of ancient thought for the concept and theory of biopolitics and the relevance of biopolitical theory and ideas for the study of ancient thought. The volume is divided into three main parts: part I studies instances of biopolitics in ancient thought; part II focuses on aspects of ancient thought that elude or transcend biopolitics; and part III discusses several modern interpretations of ancient thought in the context of biopolitical theory.