Democracy and Community
Democracy and Community
Translated by Wieland Hoban

The concept of community is tainted by the events of the twentieth century, frequently appropriated by totalitarian regimes for the purposes of exclusion and oppression. In this dialogue with Peter Engelmann, philosopher Jean-Luc Nancy attempts to reframe community as central to a reconceptualization of politics and democracy.

Observing that all our interactions are in some way shared experiences, Nancy demonstrates that a common sense of life precedes our existence as individuals: we can only truly make sense of life in a plurality. Democracy is typically concerned with establishing political unity, yet its greater task lies in community: creating a space in which sense can realize itself and circulate.

This conversation with one of France’s foremost thinkers will be of great interest to all readers of contemporary philosophy and political theory.

Show More
Buy Now


Order Exam Copy

For Lecturers Only

More Info
  • June 2019
  • 120 pages
  • 130 x 193 mm / 5 x 8 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $45.00
  • 9781509535347
  • Paperback $12.95
  • 9781509535354
  • Open eBook $8.99
  • 9781509535361
Table of Contents
  • I. Rethinking the Political
  • II. History: Between Process and Event
  • III. The Ontology of Communality
  • IV. The Spirit of Communism
  • V. Democracy: Fixation or Circulation of Sense
  • Editor’s Afterword
  • Notes
About the Author

Jean-Luc Nancy (1940 – 2021) was Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Strasbourg.

Peter Engelmann is a publisher, philosopher and editor at Passagen Verlag.


Show More


‘That the common is not a blanket under which we huddle with others for protection, but a blank that eludes us, is the political lesson Nancy has sought to impart. This moving interview exposes the restless vigilance required to safeguard the negativity of this profound insight against its collapse into utopian fantasy.’

Joan Copjec, Brown University

Show More