Strange Gods provides a genealogy of modern law as a secular
theology, calling into question the received ideas that modern law
is radically different from its religious antecedents, and that
modernity involved a repudiation of theological concepts. Peter
Fitzpatrick charts the lineage of this secular theology through
three `historicities': the creation of the world's imperium, of the
modern world-system, in the sixteenth century; the time of
revolutions of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries; and the
high modernism of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Respectively condensed here in the writings of Vitoria, Hobbes and
Nietzsche, Fitzpatrick documents the substitution of a monotheistic
God by successive articulations of a persistently 'deific' law.
Strange Gods thus questions the story of secularism's triumph, by
eliciting the essentially religious force of modern law: a force
that is, moreover, recognisable in secularism's contemporary
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