A genealogy of fanaticism—unearthing its long history, before it became a tool in the Clash of Civilizations It is commonplace to hear fanaticism. Fanaticism on MR Online | There are few terms in our political vocabulary as damning as ‘fanatic’. Beyond tolerance Posted Oct 02, by Alberto Toscano. In his Fanaticism: On the Uses of an Idea, the scholar Alberto Toscano traces the history of the idea of fanaticism, a politics of passionate and unconditional.

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Azad Rahaman rated it really liked it Mar 11, This could give the impression of a simple refutation, liberal or conservative, of a radical politics of principle. Nightocelot rated it did not like it Jun 26, Instead, in a radical new interpretation, he places the fanatic at the very heart of politics, arguing that historical and revolutionary transformations require a new understanding of his role.

Jack Heslehurst rated it really liked it Mar 19, Review by Samuel Farber. The idea of fanaticism as a deviant or extreme variant of an already irrational set of religious beliefs is today invoked by the West in order to demonize and psychologize any non-liberal politics.

Russ rated it it was amazing Dec 20, Read it Forward Read it first. Alone the Orwellian title of one of his recent opinion pieces gives us a sense of the dangers of partisan faanticism Not necessarily, but, following the traces of the great thinkers who wrestled with it, it is up to us contemporaries to rethink fanaticism as a precise historical, political, and psychological concept for the present and not simply as a talisman for exorcising or eliminating absolute enemies.


His defense of Muntzer contra Cohn is particularly convincing. Similarly, the highly repressive blasphemy laws in Pakistan deserve criticism although consideration should be given to the meaning of this sentiment in the political context of present-day Pakistani society.

The meaning of fanaticism | International Socialist Review

Nevertheless, Toscano offers no analysis of social structures, which under various conditions may push particular class groupings towards certain kinds of political conduct.

State socialism too was often read in a psychological and religious key, leaving aside serious historical and sociological analyses. There is nothing that this reviewer can add to that. Firstly, it toscanl worth noting that in Hegel Islam appears as a spiritual and political phenomenon. About Fanaticism The idea of fanaticism as a deviant or extreme variant of an already irrational set of religious beliefs is today invoked by the West in order to demonize and psychologize any non-liberal politics.

The meaning of fanaticism

The writer takes aim at all the right targets: The anti-historicity of the concept in part allows for its often arbitrary and hypocritical use. They also argue that since British economic exploitation used direct force, the militant movement of the rural masses against imperialism was necessarily political.

Chapter on Kant had me faltering – I simply lack a frame of reference. A look at its philosophical history allows us instead to view its many facets and to initiate a critique of its rhetorical and analytical functions.

Besides the alerto for abstraction, enthusiasm, passion, and hatred for injustice, oppression, and exploitation are requirements to engage and sustain political struggles for liberation. The study also shows the various meanings of fanaticism in widely different and contrasting circumstances. Aug 29, Pages Buy. This view ignores any distinction fanatiicsm the principal issues—racist or imperialist aggression—and real but subordinate matters: In the conceptual transcription of the revolution, fanaticism appears as a short circuit between the abstract universal and its concrete realization, a manifestation of subjective freedom in its pure negativity, in its active refusal of any determination.


The whites were no longer to be feared, and such purposeless massacres degrade and brutalize a population, especially one which was just beginning as a nation and had so bitter a past. Manifests a certain Negritude of Antonio variety. Showing how fanaticism results from a failure to formulate an adequate a,berto politics, this illuminating history sheds new light on an idea that continues to dominate debates about faith and secularism.

Zehra rated it liked it Aug 24, It could at most reorganize or restore, but never found a new tosvano.

We could borrow Justice William O. One of these is political consciousness and organization. Demetrius rated it it was ok May 17, This expanded edition includes new material that revisits the idea of fanaticism as it operates at tosxano limits of the liberal political imaginary, highlighting its relation to fraternal violence, political purity and the refusal of compromise, as well as its centrality to times of social crisis and international conflict.

Toscano builds on the theoretical rejuvenation of radical thought effected fantaicism Zizek and Badiou, which he combines with meticulous intellectual history.

What is the political core of the Kantian discourse on fanaticism? May 04, Pages Buy.