Redeemer Nation in the Interregnum interrogates the polyvalent role that American exceptionalism continues to play after 9/11. Whereas American exceptionalism is often construed as a discredited Cold War-era belief structure, Spas persuasively demonstrates how it operationalizes an apparatus of biopolitical capture that saturates the American body politic down to its capillaries. The exceptionalism that Redeemer Nation in the Interregnum renders starkly visible is t a corrigible ideological screen. It is a deeply structured ethos that functions simultaneously on ontological, moral, ecomic, racial, gendered, and political registers as the American Calling. Precisely by refusing to answer the American Calling, by rendering iperative (in Agamben's sense) its covenantal summons, Spas enables us to imagine an alternative America. At once timely and personal, Spas's meditation ackwledges the priority of being. He emphasizes the dignity t simply of humanity but of all phemena on the continuum of being, the groundless ground of any political formation that would claim the name of democracy.
William Spanos is Distinguished Professor of English at Binghamton University, SUNY. Donald E. Pease is Ted and Helen Geisel Third Century Professor in the Humanities at Dartmouth College.