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Modernity and Its DiscontentsMaking and Unmaking the Bourgeois from Machiavelli to Bellow$
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Steven B. Smith

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780300198393

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300198393.001.0001

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Kant’s Liberal Internationalism

Kant’s Liberal Internationalism

(p.131) Chapter 7 Kant’s Liberal Internationalism
Modernity and Its Discontents

Steven B. Smith

Yale University Press

Modernity has created an age of globalization. Immanuel Kant was the first writer to connect the Enlightenment’s belief in an age of reason and criticism with the emergence of a new international order after the French Revolution. Kant was the architect of the human rights revolution that would later find expression in institutions like the United Nations and in charters like the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Kant offered a road map to “perpetual peace” with his argument that when seen from a “cosmopolitan” perspective, humanity has been evolving, by fits and starts to be sure, to a condition of global governance overseen by international law. The chapter argues that Kant represents the high point of Enlightenment, yet he also dangerously underestimated the forces of nationalism and tribalism that would govern later modernity.

Keywords:   Cosmopolitanism, Critique, Enlightenment, French Revolution, Hospitality, Kant, Immanuel, Perpetual Peace, Schmitt, Carl, Unsocial Sociability

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