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3.73 of 5 stars 3.73  ·  rating details  ·  1,435 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Imperialism as we knew it may be no more, but empire is alive and well. It is, as the authors demonstrate in this work the new political order of globalization. It is easy to recognise the contemporary economic, cultural, and legal transformations taking place across the globe but difficult to understand them. Hardt and Negri contend that they should be seen in line with o ...more
Paperback, 504 pages
Published September 15th 2001 by Harvard University Press (first published 2000)
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Postmodernism, or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism by Fredric JamesonSpecters of Marx by Jacques DerridaDialectic of Enlightenment by Theodor W. AdornoStorming Heaven by Steve WrightEmpire by Michael Hardt
Mapping Critical Theory
5th out of 61 books — 11 voters
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Sociology Books
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It is difficult, I think, to read a work considered “new” and/or “groundbreaking” in the very recent past after the ideas it contains have become pervasive- and not necessarily because the work ‘broke the story’ about them- and are still very active in society. Due to the many years of debate on an issue afterwards, reading the original argument can end up, through a kind of auditory dissonance, being aligned with the naïfs of the present or, even worse, the apocalyptic extremes that some people ...more
Well, it's...very...provocative. Not to say annoying. "Empire" was billed as the Next Big Thing--- the first Deleuze/Guattari postmodern revisioning of Marxist ideas of international politics, the path through the rhizome to 21st-century visions of re-territorialised or post-territorial empire. And it's interesting on an abstract level--- the book is rather good at deploying postmodern and post-structuralist authors to make its point. Though...the actual concrete political thoughts here really a ...more
With respect to the authors of this strange, postmodern Marx-masturbation fest, I felt my intelligence insulted on "many levels of consciousness" and, even more strangely, given the ostensibly anti-transcendent intent of this book, condescended to from an altogether transcendent plane of existence. I shall not feign an understanding of this book in order to review it; I simply shall say I read it and felt at times rather intensely stimulated in a subjective way. But when the sun sets upon the co ...more
Hardt and Negri have developed a post-modern tour de force with Empire. They have systematically identified the shortcomings of modern capitalism while maintaining the vernacular and spirit of avant philosophical thought. Developing on the work of Baudrillard, Foucault, and Deleuze/Guatarri, perhaps the most cogent critique of contemporary capitalist hegemony has been achieved.
By diagraming the development of capatalism from its hierarchial origins to its modern decentralized form of oppression
I have the same issue with this book as I do most books of the genre, and it is a money making genre btw. My problem is lack of realistic resolution or proposal for solution. The critique, as is the case in most of these types of books was pretty accurate. Of course there was the overgeneralization us v. them archetype, but it is necessary to make the story compelling. Also, at the end of the day this is a narrative not a history.
The critique which is essentially Marxism applied to modern globa
Feb 08, 2015 Baris rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: comps
disclaimer: I could not read the entire book.
This book is dated, overrated, boring, lacks focus and non-original. Avoid it.
Jul 02, 2014 Tecni rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Tecni by: Roberto Rivera
Como cualquier libro de autores marxistas contemporáneos, tiene una literatura complicada, muy académica, llena de constantes citas y retruécanos incomprensibles; no es un libro para pasar el rato, sino más bien para leerlo poco a poco, embeberse de lo que dice y luego intentar digerirlo si no habías llegado tú previamente a la misma conclusión.

Porque yo sí lo había hecho. Los autores nos conducen apresuradamente (lo cual no es malo dadas las circunstancias) a través de la Historia moderna desde
Jim Coughenour
An astonishing book – unfortunately, the herculean effort required to translate its tortured academese into intelligibility yields minimal insight. "Theory" guaranteed to neutralize any activist, but one star for sheer chutzpah.
. . . because I sound ignorant if I don't give it four stars. Also, they conclude by discussing the relevance of the term posse to their Marxist worldview. They get an extra star for that alone.
A flawed but critical reconsideration of Marxism for the Post-Cold War era. With revolutionary leftism seeming to all but evaporate after the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the fall of the final major barrier to the global capitalist system, Hardt and Negri took on the task of reformulating the marxist conception of class struggle and the materialist conception of history for a post-modern, post-industrial society in which liberal capitalism is ubiquitous as a hegemonic ideology.

Their star
Ekin Can
Aslında birşeyleri yorumlarken, bilindik,tanıdık veya klişe kavramları kullandığımızda pek etki etmediğini görebiliyoruz.Yani her taşın altından emperyalist bir Amerika'yı çıkarmak, yorumdan sayılmaz oldu.Çünkü bu nasıl bir emperyalist güçtür ki, evimize hatta yatak odamıza kadar işlesin bizi engellesin, birazda yaşamdaki mutluluklarımız veya kaygılarmızda buna dahil etmeliyiz.
Böylelikle mutlaka bunu bir sistematik işleyişi vardır.Hatta neden-sonuç ekseninde büyükler ve küçükler zorunlu bir şeki
Empire is a colossal disappointment, moving as it does from an excellent problem statement concerning the state of Marxist intellectualism in the face of a changing formation of capital, then to Foucault's notion of biopower, then to an apologia for the arguments the authors have already called deprecated.

But the borrowing from Foucault is an intellectual red herring. In no sense are Negri and Hardt following Foucault's notions of history, but rather wrapping themselves in his intellectual earn
Gizem Kendik
Oct 04, 2013 Gizem Kendik marked it as to-read

this book is on the reading list for local election candidates of Justice and Development Party in Turkey
The List ( )
- The Age of Extremes: A History of the World 1914-1991 - Eric Hobsbawn
- Utopia - Thomas More
- Yol, Bilgi, Varlık - İmam Gazali
- The End of History and the Last Man - Francis Fukuyama
- The Prince - Nicolo Machiavelli
- Küresel Barış Vizyonu - Recep Tayyip Erdoğa
- Küresel Bunalım - Ahmet Davutoğlu
- Necessary Illusions: Thought Control in Demo
What I found most interesting about this one was the focus it had on transnational politics, political bodies larger than nations spanning around the globe. Where I am from (the U.S.) people across the political spectrum are protective of the nation as a sort of top-level political entity. We talk of building fences, preventing outsourcing, national security, etc. Perhaps the nation—at least as we have known it since the 19th century—is due for a change.

I've seen some criticism that this book is
سرانجام، افلاتون جدید بر سر ما فریاد خواهد کشید که شما مشتی آنارشیست بیش نیستید. این درست نیست، ما آنارشیست میبودیم اگر (همچون تراسیماخوس و کالیکلس، این هم بحثهای جاویدان افلاتون) از موضع مادیتی سخن نمیگفتیم که در شبکههای مشارکت تولیدی ساخته و پرداخته شده است؛ به عبارت دیگر از ایستار انسانیتی که به صورت تولیدی و از گذر «نام مشترک» آزادی ساخته و پرداخته شده است. نه، ما آنارشیست نیستیم، بلکه کمونیستهایی هستیم که دیدهایم چقدر دولتهای بزرگ لیبرال و سوسیالیست، موجب سرکوب و نابودی انسانیت شدهاند. دیده ...more
Wow, what a book! Not easy going, be prepared to give some times to work through the muck and mire - if I could, I'd knock off half a star for its academese. Someone seriously needs to write a short book or pamphlet breaking down why this book is important, and more critically, how to make sense of what they're positing without taking the days or weeks it takes to digest it all.

Short version: combine Foucaultian biopolitics with the militancy and self-affirming collectivization and resistance o
Interesting concepts for sure, but I ultimately have mixed feelings on it. It kind of downplays the role of the US a lot, as well as ignoring that the shift from material->immaterial labor isn't as prevalent in the third world. It makes a lot of sweeping claims, and gets optimistic when not necessary. But it's also a really interesting post-autonomia/post-modern analysis of globalization, and has a lot of useful things on how constitution, lockean right, and what not are used in globalization ...more
Caitlin Daly
There are some interesting points scattered throughout the book. However, I found that the same ideas kept being reiterated with such frequency that one begins to question whether or not they are valid.
Empire identifies a radical shift in concepts that form the philosophical basis of modern politics, concepts such as sovereignty, nation, and people. Hardt and Negri link this philosophical transformation to cultural and economic changes in postmodern society--to new forms of racism, new conceptions of identity and difference, new networks of communication and control, and new paths of migration. They also show how the power of transnational corporations and the increasing predominance of postin ...more
This book is interesting and also infuriating. Lots of hand waving post-modern word salads are mixed in with occasionally lucid and relevant arguments. I think the arguments in this book could be presented in plain English via a slimmed down pamphlet which would increase its use value. Concrete examples to illustrate the ideas would go a long way to convincing me that the arguments have merit, rather than just being polysyllabic adjectives aimed at impressing a few academics churning out papers ...more
Mar 09, 2008 Robin marked it as to-read
"Certainly, there must be a moment when reappropriation [of wealth from capital] and selforganization [of the multitude] reach a threshold and configure a real event. This is when the political is really affirmed—when the genesis is complete and self-valorization, the cooperative convergence of subjects, and the proletarian management of production become a constituent power. […] We do not have any models to offer for this event. Only the multitude through its practical experimentation will offe ...more
Egor Sofronov
An epic picture, the text of a modern Leviathan.
One of those books you must return to it many times...
Ambivalent. I liked the readings of new international regimes of law and power, and found the interpretations of specific philosophers pretty compelling, but thought in the end its depiction of contemporary society unconvincing--a bit too reminiscent of all the talk of "global village"/twitter revolution--and that its emphasis on the radical difference between this contemporary society and past eras to be too overstated. I also thought the idea of the multitude was generally too vague.
Mar 26, 2008 Oliver added it
A parson's egg of a book.: "Empire" failed to live up to its promise. The prose style was irritating. Brilliantly lucid now, then glib post-modern; did Hardt and Negri take it in turns to write?

The substantive issues also recieved uneven attention. The attempt to rehabilitate Marxism really didn't work, and despite some excellent points, the central thesis is flawed, and other avenues remain unexplored. Cooper's take (The Postmodern State) is more coherent and promising.

Jan 31, 2008 Andrewf rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: orthodox marxists
More interesting for the breakthrough it made into the mainstream and for how it raised issues with sections of the left that otherwise would have ignored them but highly flawed for simply ignoring the fact that much of its basic argument is not new but as old as the anarchist movement. And in terms of predictions and solutions the less said the better.

I published a detailed review back in 2002 that can be found at
Basma Abdallah Uraiqat
I wish I read the reviews on this book before reading it. It is as bad as it is said to be. I got this book because it crosses with any of my interests in terms of philosophy and global theory but it is a very badly written piece. Tries too hard to sound intellectual and sophisticated but it is really mostly void and fragmented. I think the writers are somehow trying to be the Deleuze and Guattari of their time but it didn't really work for them.

Michael Caylo-Baradi
Ideas about empire are inherently dense. And this book shows it. Indeed, the empire of labor is letting itself known through internet technology, these days, especially through social networking. To have an account in one of these networks is labor itself, means working for the owners of these networks, more subtle regimes that work through methods used in advertising. This book sees this, in its own sense of dense insightfulness.
Joel stillman
The scope and depth is nuts. Discusses why the old ideas of 'empires' are old hat, and talks at length about where we're now in macro/micro terms of human organization and discipline. Many of the "dry" topics were pretty accessible thanks to authors' clear, heartfelt connection to the material.

Of special note are the moments that connect the ideas from of an immense and disperse body of critical/political theorists.
Apr 21, 2007 Jonny rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Liberals, Autonomist Marxists
If ever there was a text to drag the left liberals from the fence (if Capital didn't already do the job) then this is it, from the concentration and international transfer of capital to the decline of the nation state into what Negri calls the "Empire" this book has it all, although the English translation from Italian could have been better, some of the phrases are a little confusing. 5/5, no doubt about it.
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Michael Hardt is an American literary theorist and political philosopher perhaps best known for Empire, written with Antonio Negri and published in 2000. It has been praised as the "Communist Manifesto of the 21st Century."
Hardt and his co-author suggest that what they view as forces of contemporary class oppression, globalization and the commodification of services (or production of affects), hav
More about Michael Hardt...
Multitude: War and Democracy in the Age of Empire Commonwealth Declaration Gilles Deleuze: An Apprenticeship in Philosophy Labor Of Dionysus: A Critique of the State-Form

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“Throughout the world what remains of the vast public spaces are now only the stuff of legends: Robin Hood’s forest, the Great Plains of the Amerindians, the steppes of the nomadic tribes, and so forth… Rousseau said that the first person who wanted a piece of nature as his or her own exclusive possession and transformed it into the transcendent form of private property was the one who invented evil. Good, on the contrary, is what is common.” 11 likes
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