The new English edition of Desobéir (2017) by the French philosopher Frédéric Gros (b. 1965) was published just before the world introduced massive coronary restrictions. The global political situation has changed significantly since then Disobey! was first published in French, but still raises some relevant questions when it comes to political obedience and disobedience.
Gros is a professor of philosophy at the University of Paris-XII and the Department of Political Studies (Sciences-Po). He has written books on psychiatry, law and war, in addition to writing the best-selling book Philosophy of Walking (2009).
The title of this book seems provocative, for how many will be politically disobedient to the coronary restrictions? Is not it now that we must be obedient, since it is a matter of life and death? But that is also why the book is interesting to read – because what does Gros really mean by disobedience?
The tax authorities, the army and the church
The book is first and foremost about the temptation to be politically obedient. It is a deep dive into where disobedience began, and where the desire to obey comes from, all the way to Socrates' time: Why, where, when and for how long are we obedient?
Gros refers to Immanuel Lace when he writes that philosophy always ends in disobedience. He believes that thinking is provocative, since it is intended to loosen the mind, and then fix it.
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