- Subject index
This major new Handbook provides a definitive state-of-the-art review to political theory, past and present. It offers a complete guide to all the main areas and fields of political and philosophical inquiry today by the world's leading theorists. The Handbook is divided into five parts which together serve to illustrate: - the diversity of political theorizing - the substantive theories that provide an over-aching analysis of the nature/or justification of the state and political life - the political theories that have been either formulated or resurgent in recent years - the current state of the central debates within contemporary political theory - the history of western political thought and its interpretations - traditions in political thought outside a western perspective. The Handbook of Political Theory marks a benchmark publication at the cutting edge of its field. It is essential reading for all students and academics of political theory and political philosophy around the world.
Chapter 3: Straussian Approaches to the Study of Politics
Straussian Approaches to the Study of Politics
The Originating Impulse and Agenda
The studies that fall under this rubric take their inspiration from Leo Strauss's (1899–1973) critique of twentieth-century political thought and action. Born into a Jewish orthodox community in rural Wilhelminian Germany, Strauss was initially drawn to the Marburg neo-Kantian school. There he encountered a purportedly rigorous foundation for progressive liberal constitutionalism, and an interpretation of Judaism as being or as culminating in ‘the religion of reason’. But Strauss soon found himself unable to deny the devastating power of Nietzsche's, and then Heidegger's and Rosenzweig's, ruthless exposure of the groundlessness, and hence the ultimately nihilistic and degrading spiritual consequences, of the claims of Western rationalism (1965: 7–8, ...