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Six political philosophies in search of a virus: Critical perspectives on the coronavirus pandemic

Gerard Delanty

LEQS – LSE 'Europe in Question' Discussion Paper Series from European Institute, LSE

Abstract: The Coronavirus (Covid-19) poses interesting questions for social and political thought. These include the nature and limits of the ethical responsibility of the state, personal liberty and collective interests, human dignity, and state surveillance. As many countries throughout the world declared states of emergency, some of the major questions in political philosophy become suddenly highly relevant. Foucault’s writings on biopolitical securitization and Agamben’s notion of the state of exception take on a new reality, as do the classical arguments of utilitarianism and libertarianism. In this paper, I discuss six main philosophical responses to the pandemic, including provocative interventions made by Agamben, Badieu, and Zizek, Latour on the governance of life and death as well as the Kantian perspective of Habermas on human dignity

Keywords: Agamben; Badieu; Utilitarianism; Habermas; libertarianism; Latour; nudge theory; Zizek (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020-05
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