Gustav Landauer's anarcho-mysticism and the critique of political theology

Newman, Saul. 2020. Gustav Landauer's anarcho-mysticism and the critique of political theology. Political Theology, 21(5), pp. 434-451. ISSN 1462-317X [Article]

Newman, S. (2020) Gustav Landauer's Anarcho-Mysticism and the Critique of Political Theolgy_(AAM).pdf - Accepted Version
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Abstract or Description

This paper explores the anarcho-mystical thought of Gustav Landauer as a critical response to Schmitt's sovereign-centric political theology. It is argued that Landauer's thought effects a radical displacement of the concept of state sovereignty through autonomous forms of community, subjectivity and affinity. Central here, I argue, is his notion of mystical withdrawal and spiritual self-transformation. I develop some parallels here with recent interventions in Italian (im)political thought in which the representative capacity of sovereignty is called into question. I conclude by suggesting that anarcho-mysticism, as a critical engagement with political theology, not only broadens out this category, but offers a way of interpreting new forms of activism and dissent.

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Gustav Landauer, Carl Schmitt, political theology, anarcho-mysticism, sovereignty, anarchism, the impolitical

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23 March 2020Accepted
1 April 2020Published Online

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Date Deposited:

26 Mar 2020 12:39

Last Modified:

01 Oct 2021 01:26

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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