Andreas Kalyvas

The New School, NYC, USA


The Return of the Dictator: Machiavelli's neo-Classical Republicanism and the Problem of the Exception




 The paper examines Machiavelli's seminal contribution to the rediscovery and revival of the concept of dictatorship in modern political thought and traces his influence on constitutional theories of emergency rule.

I seek to accomplish three goals.  First, to locate the modern recovery of dictatorship within the broader historical movement of neo-Classical republicanism; second, to reconstruct the ensuing debate over the relationship between the institution of the dictator and the republican doctrine of government that involved major figures of modern political theory; and third to probe certain political implications of a theoretical and normative nature pertaining to the contemporary republican theory and its self-presentation as a superior alternative to both democracy and liberalism.