Preface to the Italian edition (2008)
Preface to the second French edition (2004): "Of Insurgent Democracy"
Chapter 1: The Utopia of the Rational State
Chapter 2: Political Intelligence
Chapter 3: From the 1843 Crisis to the Criticism of Politics Chapter 4: A Reading Hypothesis
Chapter 5: The Four Characteristics of True Democracy Chapter 6: True Democracy and Modernity
Annex: "Savage Democracy" and the "Principle of Anarchy"
"This book makes a most significant contribution. It offers a fresh and generally persuasive interpretation of Marx, while also addressing some contemporary issues within democratic theory."
Perspectives on Politics
"Of interest primarily to scholars of Marxism and contemporary French political theory. Recommended."
"Democracy is not a State-form. The power of the people is the antithesis of the Statist principle. By maintaining with Marx, and against the Marxist tradition, this radical thesis, Miguel Abensour makes an essential contribution to the urgent task of returning the words 'politics' and 'democracy' to their original meaning."
Jacques Rancière, University of Paris
"This is a long-awaited translation of a very important book. Abensour presents an utterly persuasive reading of the early Marx in terms of the notion of ‘true democracy' which cannot be reduced to the State-form. Thus there is a Machiavellian moment of political decision in Marx that exceeds the identification of politics with the State. The work is a hugely suggestive and important intervention into contemporary theoretical debates."
Simon Critchley, New School for Social Research
"At a time when popular distrust of the State is monopolized by right-wing movements, it is healthy to be reminded that there is a powerful counterpart on the left. In his provocative defense of 'insurgent democracy,' Abensour shows the abiding power of a libertarianism unafraid to acknowledge its debt to anarchist thought and practice."
Martin Jay, University of California, Berkeley
- Miguel Abensour is an influential political philosopher in France, well-known for his highly original interpretations of Marx.
- The text provides a reading of the young Marx’s work on politics, democracy and the state, linking Marx’s writings with elements of Levinas’s work and anarchism.
- This is a high-quality work by an original and topical thinker.
- It should appeal to graduate students and academics in philosophy, politics, sociology and to general readers interested in progressive politics.