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Unformatted text preview: cMaster University, “Political
Life Before Identity”, Theory & Event 10:1, Project Muse, og)
While this mere existence does not constitute an enviable condition for Arendt, she betrays some ambivalence towards it. She protests that inalienable human rights and the dignity that they confer, must be independent of human plurality and remain valid even for those
expelled from the human community (OT 298). Whether it is possible, Arendt states, to articulate a sphere of human rights that is above the nation, guaranteed by humanity itself, is open to question. She argues that some kind of organized political community is
necessary for all human individuals, yet nevertheless commits herself to thinking about the possibility of rights guaranteed by this naked condition of life beyond law, rights and polities -- for human rights must remain valid for mere existence, she states, the right to
have rights must be guaranteed by humanity itself (OT 298). Thus while she considers naked life to pose a great danger to the common, political wo...
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- Spring '14