Political Realism in Apocalyptic Times
Cambridge University Press 2018
Alison McQueen explores the apocalyptic thought of political theorists Niccolo Machiavelli, Thomas Hobbes, and Hans Morgenthau in her new book, Political Realism in Apocalyptic Times (Cambridge University Press, 2018). The focus of the book is the way that these theorists engage with apocalyptic ideas and integrate those concepts into their broader political projects, while also putting the three thinkers in a kind of dialogue with each other in our understanding of their contributions to realist thought. This is a very thorough and engaging exploration of the political and theoretical projects of these three thinkers, and by engaging all three as realists, McQueen connects Machiavelli’s, Hobbes’, and Morgenthau’s work in ways that they are not often connected, and spans the schools of thought that usual make claim to their work and ideas. The result is a scholarly conversation integrating both international relations theory and the tradition of the history of political thought. McQueen also provides an understanding of where we, as citizens, often hear or see apocalyptic rhetoric and images, how we might want to think about apocalyptic concepts, and why politicians integrate these images into their public speeches.