On Political Theology: The Hidden Dialogue between C. Schmitt and Ernst H. Kantorowicz in The King¿s Two Bodies

Autores: Herrero, Montserrat
Título de la revista: HISTORY OF EUROPEAN IDEAS
ISSN: 0191-6599
Volumen: 41
Número: 8
Páginas: 1164 - 1177
Fecha de publicación: 2015
In recent years, Ernst H. Kantorowicz's work 'The King's Two Bodies' (1957) has been the object of both historical and philosophical research. Kantorowicz decided to subtitle his book 'A Study in Medieval Political Theology', but few scholars have actually recognised his work as research in 'political theology'. The aim of this article, then, is to uncover the sense(s) in which his book might be considered a work of 'political theology', especially in the sense coined by Carl Schmitt in 1922. Such a discussion ultimately aims to contribute to the foundation of political theology research, a subject that has been widespread among European intellectuals in the twentieth century and which continues to be a focus of interest. This article argues that Kantorowicz's book can be interpreted as a practice of -- and also an enriching addition to -- Schmitt's thesis on political theology, even if it does not mention Schmitt's name. Such a conclusion is only possible by accepting that there was a heated dialogue between Kantorowicz and Schmitt through Erik Peterson's work. The article further discusses its approach with other scholars that, even though they are based on similar hypotheses, make different conclusions.