Advertisement

The Divergent Cosmopolitanisms of Hannah Arendt

  • Liz Sutherland
Chapter

Abstract

Several recent attempts to defend cosmopolitanism in international political theory have relied on the work of Hannah Arendt. Patrick Hayden argues that ‘cosmopolitan realism’ can be applied to Arendt’s position on responsibility for humanity. Robert Fine extracts a ‘worldly cosmopolitanism’ from Arendt’s insistence that we reconstruct the idea of humanity in the face of its eradication. Seyla Benhabib argues for a shift toward cosmopolitan norms, based on her interpretation of Arendt’s claim that an attempt to eradicate a group constitutes an offence against ‘the human status.’ Each of these theorists navigates the tension between Arendt’s call for a ‘new law on earth’ and her insistence on the bounded polity as the space for political action. I examine these attempts to extrapolate a cosmopolitan theory from Arendt’s writings, and I evaluate the possibilities they hold for an Arendtian cosmopolitan approach to crime against humanity.

Keywords

Human rights Crimes against humanity Cosmopolitanism Genocide Humanity 

References

  1. Allen, Wayne F. 1982. Hannah Arendt: Existential Phenomenology and Political Freedom. Philosophy and Social Criticism 9 (2): 170–190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Arendt, Hannah. 2004 [1951]. Concluding Remarks. In The Origins of Totalitarianism. With an Introduction by Samantha Power. New York: Schocken Books.Google Scholar
  3. ———. 1994a [1963]. Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil. New York: Viking Press.Google Scholar
  4. ———. 1994b. Essays in Understanding, 1930–1954. Ed. Jerome Kohn. New York: Harcourt, Brace & Co.Google Scholar
  5. ———. 1998 [1958]. The Human Condition. Introduction by Margaret Canovan. 2nd ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  6. ———. 2005. Introduction into Politics. The Promise of Politics. Edited and with an introduction by Jerome Kohn, 93–200. New York: Schocken Books.Google Scholar
  7. ———. 1973 [1951]. The Origins of Totalitarianism. New York: Harcourt, Brace.Google Scholar
  8. ———. 2003. Responsibility and Judgment. Ed. Jerome Kohn. New York: Schocken Books.Google Scholar
  9. Arendt, Hannah, and Karl Jaspers. 1992. Correspondence 1926–1969. Eds. Lotte Kohler and Hans Saner. Trans. Robert and Rita Kimber. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.Google Scholar
  10. Benhabib, Seyla. 2006. Another Cosmopolitanism. Ed. Robert Post, 13–80. Oxford: Oxford UP.Google Scholar
  11. ———. 1996. The Reluctant Modernism of Hannah Arendt. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  12. ———. 2004. The Rights of Others. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Fine, Robert. 2007. Cosmopolitanism. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  14. ———. 2009. Cosmopolitanism and Human Rights: Radicalism in a Global Age. Metaphilosophy 40 (1): 8–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. ———. 2001. Political Investigations: Hegel, Marx, Arendt. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  16. Fine, Robert, and Robin Cohen. 2002. Four Cosmopolitan Moments. In Conceiving Cosmopolitanism: Theory, Context, and Practice, ed. Steven Vertovec and Robin Cohen, 137–162. Oxford: Oxford UP.Google Scholar
  17. Hayden, Patrick. 2005. Cosmopolitan Global Politics. Aldershot: Ashgate.Google Scholar
  18. ———. 2009. Political Evil in a Global Age: Hannah Arendt and International Theory. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  19. Koring, Paul. 2008. Terror Claims Trap Canadian in Khartoum. Globe and Mail. April 28. Web edition. Accessed June 26, 2010. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/article680695.ece
  20. Menke, Christoph. 2007, Fall. The ‘Aporias of Human Rights’ and the ‘One Human Right’: Regarding the Coherence of Hannah Arendt’s Argument. Translated from the German by Birgit Kaiser and Kathrin Thiele. Social Research. 74 (3): 739–762.Google Scholar
  21. Owens, Patricia. 2010. Walking Corpses: Arendt on the Limits and Possibilities of Cosmopolitan Politics. In International Relations Theory and Philosophy: Interpretive Dialogues, ed. Cerwyn Moore and Chris Farrands, 72–82. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  22. Sallot, Jeff. 2006. How Canada Failed Citizen Maher Arar. Globe and Mail. September 19. Web edition. Accessed June 26, 2010. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/article843751.ece

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Liz Sutherland
    • 1
  1. 1.TorontoCanada

Personalised recommendations