Michael Hardt is a professor in the literature program at Duke University.
Antonio Negri is an independent researcher and writer and a political prisoner recently released from house arrest in Rome, Italy. He has been a lecturer in political science at the University of Paris and professor of political science at the University of Padua.
Empire (2000)-the surprise hit that made its term for U.S global hegemony stick and presciently set the agenda for post-9/11 political theory on the left-was written by this same somewhat unlikely duo: Hardt, an American political scientist at Duke University, and Negri, a former Italian parliament member and political exile, trained political scientist and sometime inmate of Rome's Rebibbia prison. This book follows up on Empire's promise of imagining a full-blown global democracy. Though the authors admit that they can't provide the final means for bringing that entity about (or the forms for maintaining it), the book is rich in ideas and agitational ends. The "multitude" is Hardt and Negri's term for the earth's six billion increasingly networked citizens, an enormous potential force for "the destruction of sovereignty in favor of democracy." The middle section on the nature of that multitude is bookended by two others. The first describes the situation in which the multitude finds itself: "permanent war." The last grounds demands for and historical precursors of global democracy. Written for activists to provide a solid goal (with digressions into history and theory) toward which protest actions might move, this timely book brings together myriad loose strands of far left thinking with clarity, measured reasoning and humor, major accomplishments in and of themselves. (On sale Aug. 9) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
"This timely book brings together myriad loose strands of far left thinking with clarity, measured reasoning and humor." --Publishers Weekly, starred
"Impressive... a rare and exciting work of synthesis." --Booklist, starred review
"Brilliant." --The Village Voice
"An inspiring marriage of realism and idealism." --Naomi Klein, author of No Logo