Maria Laura Lanzillo

Governing fear in the global age

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Why was the State born in order to govern fear and produce security? Does the government of fear continue to be the aim of politics, or rather is fear governing our present? Is it still possible to suggest a new practice of political thought which is up to the challenges of present times, and capable to think the common space as a multicultural space of freedom and democracy? These are some of the questions crossing the essays proposed in this issue of «Filosofia Politica» about the question of «fear». Our times are facing again the problem of governing fear, a problem which was crucial within modern political thought, but today is experiencing meaningful changes: fear in global age - far from being neutralized as something threatening political order with destruction - has become rather the sovereign dominating the political order itself. The essays here presented concern the reconstruction and understanding of fear operated by modern political philosophy, that conceived fear as a passion to be transformed into the productive source of political and social order (C. Galli); the use and government of fear to discipline individual and society (M.L. Lanzillo); the analysis of the contemporary public and political discourse invaded by fear (M. Durante); the constitution of the penal sphere as an answer to the evidence of violence conceived as the object of modern fear (R. Cornelli). The aim of this essays move from the necessity of deconstructing fear, of tracing its genealogy and practicing archeology, in order to understand our present marked by fear, and to suggest possible changes.

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