Previously at the ICA - Events
8 Jul 2010
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 demonise and psychologize any non-liberal politics.
Cultural critic, philosopher and lecturer in sociology at Goldsmiths, Alberto Toscano, explores the critical role fanaticism played in forming modern politics and the liberal state, and undermines the idea that liberalism and fanaticism are irrevocably opposed.
Toscano tears apart the sterile opposition of “reasonableness” and fanaticism and, in a radical new interpretation, places the fanatic at the very heart of politics, arguing that historical and revolutionary transformations require a new understanding of its role.
Alberto Toscano’s new book, Fanaticism: On the Uses of an Idea is published by Verso.