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The Enemy With a Thousand Faces : The Tradition of the Other in Western Political Thought and History (Hardcover)

Author: Harle, Vilho

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Harle examines how conflicts between "us" and "them" are often represented as the struggle between the representatives of good and representatives of evil. The origin of this tradition--the struggle between good and evil--is found in ancient Iranian Zoroastrianism, soon adopted by Judaism, Christianity, and finally, Islam. The political doctrine was born in ancient Greece, where power struggles between the Greek city states, especially Athens and Sparta, were represented by Athenians as the struggle between "democracy" and "tyranny." In the Middle Ages the tradition was applied to, for example, Antichrists, rival faiths, witches, Jews, Russians, and Muslims. In the modern world, examples of the tradition in American and Russian political cultures and politics, as well as Carl Schmitt's distinction between friend and enemy and its international implications, especially the EU, are examined. Finally, identity politics in Finland, Karelia, and Lapland are presented as a problem of the definition of Europe. Harle claims that phenomena like ethnic conflicts, political extremism, neo-Nazism, and anti-Semitism are nothing new and are not independent of one another; instead, as Harle shows, they are examples in a long chain of tradition and interconnected through that tradition. A provocative analysis for scholars and researchers in international relations, political history, and the history of ideas.


Publisher Greenwood Pub Group
Mfg Part# 9780275961411
SKU 203128815
Format Hardcover
ISBN10 0275961419
Release Date 11/7/2011
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