Polemos no.1, 2022: FURIO JESI. MYTHOPOLITICS.

Furio Jesi. Mythopolitics

Edited by Emanuele Edilio Pelilli and James Martel



Furio Jesi was a scholar from Turin with an enormous variety of interests. His intellectual path started with archaeology and the history of religion, and included anthropology and ethnology, the study of myth and mythology, literary criticism, German studies, the history of ideas and philosophy. As an intellectual figure he is difficult to classify. He was of Jewish origin but not a believer and a militant theorist of the new left.  Jesi has only recently attracted the attention of scholars around the world due to the power of his analysis and the depth of his thought.  He offers fundamental theoretical insights as well as deeply relevant and timely concepts concerning the performativity of narratives and fictions, the knowability of myth and its political use, the re-semantization and transformation of mythologems, and the critique and questioning of hegemonic temporalities in the Western tradition. These sorts of interventions are much needed in current philosophical and political debates.

We are proposing a special issue of the journal “Pólemos. Materiali di filosofia e critica sociale” entitled Furio Jesi. Mythopolitics. This special issue aims to promote reflections on Jesi’s contributions to current philosophical, political, ethnological, anthropological debates. In particular, we invite a deepening and/or a critical reflection the basic concepts that Jesi’s develops in terms of their relevance for contemporary issues. We have a special regard for the more purely theoretical and political concepts, such as his model of the “double Sophia”, the dispositive of the “there is-not”, the mythological machine, the theoretical relationship between allegory and symbol, the temporal relationship between revolution and revolt, as well as that of mythology and the poetic commonplace.

The curators invite contributions on the following thematic cores inside Jesi’s thought:

  • The main gnoseological and theoretical paradigms of his reflection: in particular the theory of archetypal connections, the model of “the mythological machine”, the paradigm of the “Double Sophia”, the mechanism of the “there is-not”, the theory of the “symbol resting in itself”.
  • The problem of the knowability or otherwise of myth, the science of mythology, the status of mythologies and their re-semantizations and metamorphoses, mythological survivals and the role of literature, topoi and common places.
  • His ontology of fiction, specifically the performative value of narratives, mythopoiesis, the particular status of the paradoxical mythological logic.
  • The interrelationships between myth, temporality, and politics: specifically, the technicalities and political uses of myth; the different temporalities of conservativism, revolt, and revolution; the substantialization of myth and the critique of right-wing culture; the negations of myth and the critique of Enlightenment Marxism.
  • Jesi’s relationship to his major influences (Károly Kerényi, Georges Dumézil, Walter Benjamin, Carl Gustav Jung, Claude Levi-Strauss, Vladimir Jakovlevič Propp, Leo Frobenius, Johann Jakob Bachofen).
  • Jesi’s interpretation and analysis of important intellectuals in Western culture, such as Rainer Maria Rilke, Arthur Rimbaud, Thomas Mann, Cesare Pavese, Søren Kierkegaard.


The articles should have a maximum limit of 40,000 characters (including spaces), and be accompanied by an abstract of 1000 characters (in Italian and English). When completed the essays must be sent to the e-mail address cfp@rivistapolemos.it by July 5, 2022 (in one of the following formats: .doc, .docx, .odt) in a single document that is suitable for anonymous review (double blind peer review) and in accordance with editorial guidelines. Contributions directly relevant to the suggested lines of research are particularly welcome. We accept contributions in Italian, English, French, German and Spanish.

Authors wishing to submit to the journal contributions that exceed the themes identified are invited to discuss in advance with the editors of the monographic issue, by sending an email to the following addresses:




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