Politics - A Glimpse at Bodybuilding Afterword to What’s the New Body of the Body Politic? A Cini Dialog

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Politics - A Glimpse at Bodybuilding Afterword to What’s the New Body of the Body Politic? A Cini Dialog application/pdf icon
2019

Afterword of the 2017 meeting at Cini Foundation, San Giorgio, Venice

Abstract

How in our right mind could we have the idea of convening in one three-day meeting political philosophers with scientists working on ants, baboons, cells, natural parks, together with historians of capitalism and — how totally bizarre! — specialists of the planet taken as a whole, namely Gaia — plus metaphysicians and historians of science thrown in, plus a bit of legal theory and a lot of social science to steer the pot further? What did we hope to achieve by linking corporate law with embryo development, the management of Amboseli with 19th century investment in railway or the competition between baboons and farmers, with the philosophy of Whitehead and the autotrophy of the earth system?
And yet the only way to have a chance to renew the question of the extent, function and future of politics might well be to enter into this strange exercise and, against all odds, to carry it obstinately to the end. Why? Because whatever you expect from the future, you will indeed have to join in some ways in the same polity exactly those various types of beings that were brought to the table in September 2017. It is true that the term “body politik” has been disputed, but is there a better way to flag the goal of the new geohistorical epoch? No matter how disputed is the geological term of Anthropocene, this is exactly the sort of clarification that it triggers and the sort of occasion it opens for natural and social scientists to be able to collaborate. Indeed, it has provided a new breed of diplomats with the underserved chance of an improbable encounter, thanks to the generosity of the Cini Foundation, in one of the most beautiful setting there is: the Biblioteca Longana of San Giorgio.