In antiquity Diogenes was asked to identify himself as a citizen. He retorted by affirming that he was a “citizen of the world” and thus implicitly rejecting local citizenship. Ever since, his political identification has become a reference point in most literature on cosmopolitanism. After a brief discussion of the predicate “citizen of the world,” this article turns to Hannah Arendt’s attribution of it to Karl Jaspers. It explores how Arendt’s related work helps us recast issues of patriotism and cosmopolitanism, get a more accurate picture of her complex view on locality and universality, and introduce new sensibilities into political philosophical engagement with claims of world citizenship. Themes of limits, solitude, and darkness emerge as possible points of interest of a philosophy that acknowledges the centrality of politics in the life of the person whose right to world citizenship is tested by subjective and collective answerability to cosmos.

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