Lloyd, Cristopher: The problem of the sovereignty of the people and social integration and dissipation: from Spinoza to universal humanism, social democracy, and ultimately the planetary perspective.

Is there a connection between (a) 21 st Century thinking about and the political practice of social organization and peaceful integration; and (b) the 17 th Century radical enlightenment? Is there some, more or less linear or non-linear, historical connection that ties together a progression in radical ideas of social integration from Spinoza to Marx to social democratic thinkers in the late 19th and early 20 th Centuries, to today’s propositions of humanistic thinking in a planetary (rather than global) perspective? Is there a kind of deep, difficult to discern, multi-braided current that has flowed through the radical tradition until today? Are the ways in which we think about human social integration and dissipation a product, at least in part, of this deep current? Of course, not all the current is in the deep. Some recent elements of it are quite visible, such as in the writings of Michel Foucault, Antonio Negri, Jonathan Israel, Malcolm Bull, Steve Fuller, and Christoph Antweiler. This paper attempts to sketch a way into this evolution of ideas that avoids a teleological progression while arguing for a probable accumulation process that has brought us to the planetary perspective. The interconnection of ideas with socio-economic history has always been a site of contention but one that has always to be examined because of this complex interconnection has significant social and political effects.