2019-02Thematic Section
Stasis and Politics: On the Forgotten Role of Violence


One of the major questions emerging in present-day reflections on politics is related to violence and its relation to institutional order and law. In the paper, an issue of concern for a very particular form of political conflict, that is, civil war, is addressed. Violence in politics, and particularly its specific form, that is, stasis (civil war), has been omitted from philosophical reflection on the origins of politics. Contrary to the traditional representation of the constitution of the political sphere, contemporary political philosophy attempts to grasp the fundamental place of violence in politics. This paper will analyze two major ways of representing politics: the traditional one, which suppresses violence, and the contemporary one, which brings to the forefront of reflection the presence of it. The comparison of these two depictions of politics affords us a comprehension of the evolution of contemporary reflection on politics, and deeply modifies how we understand politics. This article focuses on the reinterpretation of the view of politics offered by Nicole Loraux and Chantal Mouffe and discloses the influence of their reflection on our understanding of politics.


civil war, conflict, politics, democracy, Mouffe, Loraux, Agamben, Arendt

How to cite:

Zbrzeźniak, Urszula. “Stasis and Politics: On the Forgotten Role of Violence.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 3, no. 2(8) (2019): 40–50. https://doi.org/10.14394/eidos.jpc.2019.0016.


Urszula Zbrzeźniak
Institute of Philosophy, University of Warsaw
Krakowskie Przedmieście 3, 00-927 Warsaw, Poland


Agamben, Giorgio. Stasis: Civil War as a Political Paradigm. Translated by Nicholas Heron. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2015.

Agamben, Giorgio. State of Exception. Translated by Kevin Attell. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005. https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226009261.001.0001.

Arditi, Benjamin. “On the Political: Schmitt contra Schmitt.” Telos 142 (Spring 2008): 7-28.

Arendt, Hannah. On Revolution. London: Penguin Books, 1977.

Arendt, Hannah. On Violence. In The Crises of the Republic. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1972.

Arendt, Hannah. The Human Condition. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998.

Baran, Magdalena. Znaczenie wojny. Pytając o wojnę sprawiedliwą. Łódź: Fundacja Liberté, 2018.

Foucault, Michel. Society Must Be Defended. Translated by David Macey. New York: Picador, 2003.

Laclau, Ernesto. Emancipation(s). New York: Verso, 2007.

Loraux, Nicole. The Divided City. Translated by Corinne Pache and Jeff Fort. New York: Zone Books, 2002.

Meier, Christian. “Wstęp do wydania polskiego.” In Powstanie polityczności u Greków. Translated by Marek A. Cichocki. Warszawa: Teologia Polityczna, 2012.

Meier, Christian. The Greek Discovery of Politics. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1990.

Mouffe, Chantal. Agonistics: Thinking the World Politically. New York: Verso, 2013.

Mouffe, Chantal. On the Political. New York: Routledge, 2005.

Mouffe, Chantal. The Democratic Paradox. New York: Verso, 2000.

Mouffe, Chantal. The Return of the Political. New York: Verso, 1993.

Rancière, Jacques. Disagreement and Philosophy. Translated by Julie Rose. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1999.

Open Access Statement:

This is an open access journal which means that all content is freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author, as long as the author and original source are properly cited. This is in accordance with the BOAI definition of open access.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. Submitting a text to Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture means that the author agrees with the general conditions of this license. The author does and will maintain copyrights and publishing rights for his/her article without any restrictions.