A leading Marxist political philosopher and intellectual firebrand, Antonio Negri has inspired anti-empire movements around the world through his writings and personal example. Born in 1933, he was imprisoned in Italy in 1979 and convicted, nearly five years later, on questionable charges of “association and insurrection against the state,” whereupon he left the country to teach in France. In 1997, he voluntarily returned to Italy to serve out his seventeen-year prison sentence. He was freed in 2003.
In Praise of the Common, which began as a conversation between Negri and literary critic Cesare Casarino, is the most complete review of the philosopher’s work ever published. It includes five exchanges in which the two intellectuals discuss Negri’s evolution as a thinker from 1950 to the present, detailing for the first time the genealogy of his concepts. In Praise of the Common contains two essays by Casarino that expand Negri’s most recent work by relating it to the work of other prominent thinkers.
This is at once a book by Negri and on Negri. It presents, for the first time in English, a major essay by Negri on the “monster” as a political figure in the history of Western thought, engaging with discourses of biopolitics, eugenics, and genetic engineering. More candid and self-critical than ever before, Negri provides his wide audience with a rich and revelatory assessment of his controversial, highly influential thought.