Special Issues

Special Issues

The Journal Las Torres de Lucca, continuing its goal of becoming an open and free magazine, has incorporated the section "Dossier". This section is meant to publish compilations of articles on a specific topic proposed by the dossier coordinator.

Articles published in the dossier are evaluated according to the same rules as any other articles. Therefore, those authors interested in participating in a dossier should submit their articles as usual, indicating in "comments" the adscription to a particular dossier.

For information on how to propose a dossier to the Editorial Committee, write to editorial@lastorresdelucca.org

Next Issue

N° 20 (January-June 2022): Philosophy of Political Participation.

N° 21 (July-December 2022): “The Art of War” between Ethics, Politics and the Military Arts

Number 20 (January-June 2022)

Philosophy of political participation

Coordination: Macarena Marey, Blas Radi y Moira Pérez.

Deadline: April 24, 2021.

Political participation has been a philosophical concern since Antiquity, especially in theories of democracies, old and new. According to a well-known story, democracy’s main virtue consists in the equality of opportunity to participate in public life, decision making processes and public policy design, either directly or through representatives. This equality would in its turn improve the quality of those decisions, and participation in the public realm would be a fundamental dimension of human life, thanks to the self-realization and pedagogic effects it would entail viewed as an autonomous and reflective activity.  

The ways in which this description fails to describe concrete, everyday democratic practices and the obstacles of political participation are topics of great controversies. How the “all” in “all citizens” is formed, the limits of representation, ‘democratic’ authoritarianism, and oligarchization are a few examples of relevant matters in debate.  

Contemporary democracy also faces several challenges that appeal to philosophers and political scientists almost everywhere: privatization of the public goods and services, growing political inequality, the multiplying and sharpening of global humanitarian and climatological crises that call for a multilateral collective action, the erosion of national autonomy and self-determination, the need of experts in designing institutional policies, citizens’ ignorance, and the technologies of public opinion manipulation, all these phenomena exert significant pressure on real democracies, affect and shape concrete modes of participation, and question many of our theoretical central assumptions about it.

For many social groups, participation is still the horizon of their political activity. Their efforts to be part of deliberative processes pose hard questions to democratic theory and practice: which is the best way to achieve an inclusive participation? At what cost and to what end should we try to achieve it?

At the same time, political participation rates have been dropping consistently in many democratic states: skepticism and lack of interest drive citizens away from politics, even away from the minimal formal requisites of participation in representative democracies such as voting. This sort of political apathy raises other questions: is participation in formal processes and institutions a moral obligation? Is it relevant for democratic social change? Should we develop other channels to make citizen participation more successful to this effect? But today, as we write this, there are also social processes of direct political participation and popular mass manifestations taking place in the streets of many countries, especially in South America. These current events problematize many previously unquestioned dogmas, and even the aptitude of traditional party organizations to respond to these strong demands for a deeper and broader democratization of power. Moreover, these facts coexist with the rising presence of highly organized conservative religious movements in the political realm and formal political institutions and offices.

In a nutshell, today’s world demands political participation and by showing us the limits of many traditional democratic theories suggests that we need to rethink many of its basic concepts. We open the call for papers on the central topic of political participation. Philosophical and historical works, works presenting conceptual and/or applied analyses on concrete problems, are welcome. The use of Latin American sources is encouraged but not a requisite.

Number 21 (July-December 2022)

“The Art of War” between Ethics, Politics and the Military Arts

CoordinationJesús Fernández Muñoz and Fabio Frosini.

Deadline: December 15, 2021.

Dell’Arte della guerra is (along with the first Decennale) the only work by Machiavelli published by the author. The book came out in Florence from Giunti’s printing works in 1521, after a preparation dating back to 1519. However, it is not the most famous and discussed Machiavellian text. Its circulation cannot be compared of that of The Prince or the Discourses on Livy, and the discussions of its theses have been mainly confined to the debates on strategy, army formation, types of weapons etc. However, in recent decades, studies of Renaissance and modern culture have documented the importance of this book also in less strictly technical areas, such as, especially, the relationship between “arms” and politics and the implications it has for the stability of power, the way in which soldiers are “recruited”, etc.

The 500 anniversary of the composition and publication of Dell’Arte della guerra gives us the opportunity to assess the complex history of the book’s fortune, its content, and its relationships to ethical, political and historical thought, with the ambition Of taking stock and providing a reference work.

This special issue, based on the latest research results, aims at the central issues of Machiavellian thought in relation to war, strategy and tactics, the militia, its nature and method of constitution, and in short, politics as a space in which the strictly “political” is intertwined with the “military”.

The issue will gather contributions with different approaches, methodologies, and disciplinary nature. Our intention is to collect in-depth analysis of Machiavelli’s Dell’Arte della guerra, especially but not exclusively, in the following areas: anthropology, history, philosophy, ethics, law and politics.

The evaluation of proposed contributions will consider their originality and relevance to Machiavellian studies. One of the main interests of the special issue is that researchers interested in the political theory of war in the 16th century, and Machiavelli in particular, may have access to a number of quality works.

The special issue originates from an international conference held in Sevilla in October 2019, which saw the participation of some of the most renowned and influential interpreters of Machiavelli’s political and military thought. Based on that experience, we propose to expand the number of authors, and give a more complete picture of the subject.


Special numbers published