There are some turns from which there is no turning back. Approaching such a turn, one is not of course compelled to press on; the options of retreat or diversion are always available, but only at the cost of consigning oneself to the familiar, well-trodden surroundings. If, however, eschewing such provincialism, one makes the turn and heads across the hitherto unknown landscape, there is no turning back. Never again will things be quite the same.

To be sure, the turn that has now become imperative cannot but reiterate in some measure the turn to nature that philosophy has repeatedly been compelled to carry out: the turn from the polis to the natural universe that occurs when the voice of Timaeus displaces that of Socrates; the turn from society and its inscriptions back to the pure state of nature in search of the origin of human inequality; the turn entailed by...

You do not currently have access to this content.