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The Privatized State Paperback – 3 May 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars 9 ratings

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Winner of the ECPR Political Theory Prize, European Consortium for Political Research

About the Author

Chiara Cordelli is associate professor of political science at the University of Chicago. She is the coeditor of Philanthropy in Democratic Societies.


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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Princeton University Press (3 May 2022)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 352 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0691211728
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0691211725
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 15.88 x 2.54 x 22.86 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    5.0 out of 5 stars 9 ratings

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Chiara Cordelli is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science and the College at the University of Chicago. Her main areas of research are social and political philosophy.

Cordelli’s book, The Privatized State (Princeton University Press, 2020), is a philosophical reflection on an ongoing historical transformation: if the twentieth century was the age of the bureaucratization of the modern state, the twenty-first century is the age of its privatization. After providing a non-instrumental justification of the modern state, the book argues that the above transformation undermines the very reasons that compel the existence, and justify the authority of, political institutions in the first place, that is, to constitute a relationship of reciprocal independence among persons. As a response and way forward, the book articulates a pluralistic theory of administrative legitimacy, outlining the conditions that a legitimate system of public governance and administration should meet. It also develops principles of provisional and transitional justice for contexts where governance is already extensively privatized.

Cordelli earned her BA in philosophy from the University of Rome “La Sapienza,” where she studied aesthetics, critical theory, and the history of political thought. She then moved to London for an MA program, during which time she became interested in the Anglo-American analytic tradition. She earned her PhD in political philosophy from University College London in 2011. Before joining Chicago in 2015, she was a postdoctoral scholar at Stanford University (2011-2013) and a tenure-track assistant professor at the University of Exeter, UK (2013-2015). She held visiting positions at the Library of Congress in D.C. (2009-2010), the Center for Human Values at Princeton (2014-2015), the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford (2012-2013) and the Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard (2017-2018).

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