Vitam Instituere. Geneology of instituent thought

Academic year 2022/2023
Lecturer Roberto Esposito

Integrative teaching


Examination procedure



The course is recommended for PhD students, but open to all students


The course will genealogically retrace the theory of the institution, from ancient tradition to the twentieth century, focusing on some particularly important moments: Roman law of the imperial age; the work of Machiavelli; Spinoza's political theology; Hegel's philosophy of law; twentieth-century legal institutionalism. The element that philosophically unifies contexts and authors so far away is a dynamic perspective that thinks the institution not from the point of view of what is established, but from that of the instituting practice. In this sense, life appears both subject and object of institution. Just as institutions are always living organisms, which are born, develop and die when their function is exhausted, so life is never 'naked', it is always a historically established form of life.

Bibliographical references

‘Il principe’ di Machiavelli; il ‘Trattato politico’ di Spinoza; la ‘Filosofia del diritto’ di Hegel