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Nell’abisso dell’uomo

(In the Human Abyss)

On Giorgio Agamben's Philosophy

  Radio-Feature produced and directed by Roman Herzog (2006)

a radio documentary of 66 minutes

download or listen to the first 13 minutes [mp3]
download or listen to 8 minutes of the second part [mp3]

(the audio-quality is reduced)

If you’d like to receive a CD copy of Nell'abisso dell'uomo mail to

Giorgio Agamben is considered one of the most powerful and inspiring philosophers worldwide. His thought trespasses literature and aesthetics, law and ethics, for focusing continuously the question of power and politics. His radical criticism of Western governments' politics after 1989 made him famous. “Homo Sacer”, his book about the «bare life», turned him overnight into philosophy’s international star in 1995. According to “The Times” and “Le Monde”, Agamben is today one of the ten most influential thinkers in the world.

But Agamben produces philosophy since the 1960s, when he began his philosophical journey that carried him to Germany and France, to the United States and other countries, getting into contact with people who shaped twentieth century’s thinking in decisive ways: Martin Heidegger, Ingeborg Bachmann, Gilles Deleuze and others. Agamben shares with these thinkers the profound doubt in Western rationality, because of the alarming indeterminacy of man’s existence, of its abyss.

This audio feature «In the Human Abyss» introduces the listener to the intellectual universe of Giorgio Agamben. It examines the construction of his thought, looks for links and interrelations with other thinkers and asks what drives the philosopher to his radical attacks on politics. The documentary works with Agamben’s texts and those of other contemporaries of his time, as well as with Giorgio Agamben’s own voice, as the philosopher concedes in this documentary for the first time a profound and extensive interview.

He talks about the beginning of his philosophical journey in the 1960s, his initial law studies and his contacts to writers such as Elsa Morante, Ingeborg Bachmann, Pier Paolo Pasolini and Primo Levi, about Heidegger and Benjamin, Deleuze and Foucault, about poetics and his interest in language, about his search for a human voice and his political studies, about Auschwitz, the Homo Sacer and the new wars in Ex-Yugoslavia, Iraq and Afghanistan, about Guantánamo and the political system that we are used to call democracy, about ethics after Auschwitz, Paul’s Letter To The Romans and a variety of other themes.

The documentary has a duration of 66 minutes.


If you’d like to receive a CD copy of Nell'abisso dell'uomo mail to




Nell’abisso dell’uomo (2006)

a radio documentary directed and produced
Roman Herzog

with the exclusive voice of Giorgio Agamben
and the voices of the Speakers:
Heike Brunkhorst,
Nora Patuzzi,
Umberto Naso and Roman Herzog


Useful links:


Giorgio Agamben @ European Graduate School


Sito Web Italiano per la Filosofia - Giorgio Agamben


Bibliografia di Giorgio Agamben


Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy - Giorgio Agamben