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Publication Details

Carl Schmitt’s Theory of the Political and Its Anthropological and Theological Preconditions

(Original title: Teorie politična Carla Schmitta a její antropologické a theologické předpoklady)
Filozofia, 71 (2016), 10, 821-831.
Type of work: Papers
Publication language: Czech

This article aims to introduce the mutual links between the key political points (political-philosophical and political-theological) of Carl Schmitt’s writings, set against the background of his own specific anthropology, which could be seen as inspired by Christianity, though certainly not traditional. The text shows the links between the “theory of the political”, based on the categories of friend and enemy, and political theology, which can be understood as a process and even an (anthropological) project. This basis, formulated primarily in his key text The Concept of the Political in its first and later editions is then compared, seen in anthropological perspective, with the central problems of earlier texts (The Value of the State and the Meaning of the Individual and Dictatorship) with the aim to indicate the development and continuity of C. Schmitt’s work. The paper shows that the theory of the political is not reducible to the so-called “theory of friend / enemy”; its full understanding rather requires taking into consideration Schmitt’s anthropological stand, which in the twentieth century represents a specific and peculiar critique of modern thought and “modern man”. Despite the fact that Schmitt is a very problematic figure, it cannot be denied that his analyses, especially those from the 1920s, have their considerable worth even today.


Anthropology, Carl Schmitt, Neutralization, Political philosophy, Political theology, Secularization, Theory of the political

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