New book: On Schmitt and Space

Published on
August 28, 2015

Claudio Minca recently published with Rory Rowan of the University of Zurich a new book: ‘On Schmitt and Space’. This book represents the first comprehensive study of the influential German legal and political thinker Carl Schmitt’s spatial thought, offering the first systematic examination from a geographic perspective of one of the most important political thinkers of the twentieth century.

'On Schmitt and Space' charts the development of Schmitt’s spatial thinking from his early work on secularization and the emergence of the modern European state to his post war analysis of the spatial basis of global order and international law, whilst situating his thought in relation to his changing biographical and intellectual context, controversial involvement in Weimar politics and disastrous support for the Nazi regime. It argues that spatial concepts play a crucial structural role throughout Schmitt’s work, from his well-known analyses of sovereign power and states of exception to his often overlooked spatial history of modernity. locating a fundamental relationship between space and ‘the political’ lies at the core of his thought.

The book explores the critical insight that Schmitt’s spatial thought bears on some of the key political questions of the twentieth century whilst tracking his profound and enduring influence on key debates on sovereignty, international relations, war and the nature of world order at the start of the twenty first century. While working for the Department of Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London, Claudio enjoyed one semester of sabbatical leave in Vancouver as a Visiting Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of British Columbia. During those months in 2010 he was able to spend long periods in the library. "Without this I would not have been able to contribute to the later realization of this book," Claudio says. “I am also grateful to the Environmental Sciences Department for all forms of support that I received for the realization of this project.” Claudio Minca and Rory Rowan: ‘On Schmitt and Space’. Routledge Publishers 2015, pp. 286. Price $ 140.