Cover of Karman by Giorgio Agamben Translated by Adam Kotsko
A Brief Treatise on Action, Guilt, and Gesture
Giorgio Agamben Translated by Adam Kotsko


120 pages.
from $22.00

Hardcover ISBN: 9781503602144
Paperback ISBN: 9781503605824
Ebook ISBN: 9781503605831

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What does it mean to be responsible for our actions? In this brief and elegant study, Giorgio Agamben traces our most profound moral intuitions back to their roots in the sphere of law and punishment. Moral accountability, human free agency, and even the very concept of cause and effect all find their origin in the language of the trial, which Western philosophy and theology both transform into the paradigm for all of human life. In his search for a way out of this destructive paradigm, Agamben not only draws on minority opinions within the Western tradition but engages at length with Buddhist texts and concepts for the first time. In sum, Karman deepens and rearticulates some of Agamben's core insights while breaking significant new ground.

About the author

Giorgio Agamben is a contemporary Italian philosopher and political theorist whose works have been translated into numerous languages. His most recent title with Stanford University Press is The Omnibus "Homo Sacer" (2017).