The relation between law and love is closely linked to vulnerability. Love can rule out the
certainties of the people who are in love increasing their insecurities. The paper aims to briefly
describe the modalities through which vulnerability seizes love, questioning on the role played
by law in this problematic relation.
In different ways and from different angles, the participants in this special issue critically probe
the conceptual and normative underpinnings of the model of legal order developed in to Authority
and the Globalisation of Inclusion and Exclusion and other writings. This offers me the
opportunity to flesh out these underpinnings more fully and to draw out some of their implications
which were not discussed in the book. In particular, my response focuses on the concepts
of, and systematic relation between, representation, recognition, constituent power, equality, restrained
collective self-assertion, and a-legality.
The article deals with the relationship between vulnerability in the legal realm and undecidability.
In the first part I introduce the link between vulnerability and the idea of a legal order. Moving
from an understanding of vulnerability as a character of the law, in the second part I focus on the
methodological crisis in legal science. In the last part a connection with the issue of undecidability
is established in order to show the boundaries of objective and subjective dimensions of legal
Over the last decade, the juridical-philosophical notion of vulnerability has met with considerable
success, both in terms of theoretical reflection and of concrete legal application. Much of this
success is due to its critical-hermeneutical use, aimed not only at identifying and protecting individuals
or groups particularly exposed and vulnerable, but also and above all, at adapting and
directing the legislation concerning the protection of fundamental human rights.
In this sense, the legal use of the notion of vulnerability is an integral part of the process of
constitutionalization of the human person that characterizes the European legal systems since the
second post-war period and which assumes, as its main purpose, the application of the protective
mask of the law to the concrete individuals.
Leo Strauss has been read as the author of a paradoxically nonpolitical political philosophy. This
reading finds extensive support in Strauss’s work, notably in the claim that political life leads beyond
itself to contemplation and in the limits this imposes on politics. Yet the space of the nonpolitical in
Strauss remains elusive. The “nonpolitical” understood as the natural, Strauss suggests, is the “foundation
of the political”. But the meaning of “nature” in Strauss is an enigma: it may refer either to
the “natural understanding” of commonsense, or to nature “as intended by natural science,” or to
“unchangeable and knowable necessity.” As a student of Husserl, Strauss sought both to retrieve and
radically critique both the “natural understanding” and the “naturalistic” worldview of natural science.
He also cast doubt on the very existence of an unchangeable nature. The true sense of the nonpolitical in Strauss, I shall argue, must rather be sought in his embrace of the trans-finite goals of philosophy
understood as rigorous science. Nature may be the nonpolitical foundation of the political, but
we can only ever approximate nature asymptotically. The nonpolitical remains as elusive in Strauss
as the ordinary. To approximate both we need to delve deeper into his understanding of Husserl.