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Christoph Menke in dialogue
Series: Critical Powers

This book focuses on the paradoxical character of law and specifically concerns the structural violence of law as the political imposition of normative order onto a "lawless" condition. The paradox of law which grounds and motivates Christoph Menke's intervention is that law is both the opposite of violence and, at the same time, a form of violence. The book develops its engagement with the paradox of law in two stages. The first shows why, and in what precise sense, the law is irreducibly characterized by structural violence. The second explores the possibility of law becoming self-reflectively aware of its own violence and, hence, of the form of a self-critique of law in view of its own violence. The Book's philosophical claims are developed through analyses of works of drama: two classical tragedies in the first part and two modern dramas in the second part. It attempts to illuminate the paradoxical nature of law by way of a philosophical interpretation of literature. There are at least two normative orders within the European ethical horizon that should be called "legal orders" even though they forego the use of coercion and are thus potentially nonviolent. These are international law and Jewish law. Understanding the relationship between law and violence is one of the most urgent challenges a postmodern critical legal theory faces today. Self-reflection, the philosophical concept that plays a key role in the essay, stands opposed to all forms of spontaneity.

Open Access (free)
Christoph Menke

by the impulse to oppose the violence of one against another, it cannot be indifferent to its own violence. The violence committed by law is a problem –​indeed a scandal –​for law itself. It contradicts its own claim, which it cannot renounce without betraying itself. Thus, law must, in addition, combat the violence that it commits itself. The fact that the unity of law involves a contradiction not only means that law contains two incompatible determinations, namely, combating and exercising violence. Rather, it also points to the incompatibility of the two

in Law and violence
Heikki Patomäki

resorts to imaginary violence against himself in the face of major revelations about his connections to financial scandals and drug trafficking; Primary Colors , which is a (serious) parody of Clinton’s first presidential campaign; and Wag the Dog , which is a story of a presidential sex-scandal giving rise to an imagined war in Albania. See James Der Derian’s interesting points

in Mapping European security after Kosovo
Constructing security in historical perspective
Jonathan B. Isacoff

into a Hamas base, a terrorist base.’ 18 ‘You can very quickly reach a situation in which you endanger the security of the state, and I will not (do it).’ 19 By the end of 1998, Netanyahu’s failure to produce any results on the peace front, coupled with a series of domestic political scandals, grated on the Israeli public and in May 1999 he was defeated in national elections by the

in Redefining security in the Middle East
Paul Latawski
Martin A. Smith

ongoing process of mutual socialisation that the importance of the role of PfP in South East Europe begins to emerge. The PfP has played a particularly important role in the evolution of NATO involvement in Albania. This hardly seemed likely during early 1997 when, with Albania collapsing into civil turmoil and conflict sparked off by the pyramid investment scandal, 47 the United States not only refused to intervene but, with the

in The Kosovo crisis and the evolution of post-Cold War European security