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Chapter 4 takes up the question of Schmitt’s relation with Leo Strauss in a highly original manner. Whereas other authors analyze the relations between Schmitt and Strauss on historical and even biographical grounds, Galli compares them on a strictly immanent and theoretical basis, with reference to their differing interpretations of the thought of Baruch Spinoza. After reviewing how each thinker relates to the work of Hobbes, Galli then enters into a detailed explication of their contrasting relations to Spinoza. Although both Strauss and Schmitt enter into conflict with Spinoza (as one of the intellectual sources of modern liberalism), their conflicts are ultimately very different: whereas Strauss regards Spinoza’s thought as an “enigma,” Galli argues, Schmitt refuses Spinozan thought almost entirely.

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