I just wrote this:
Beneath this somewhat facile difference in the perspective on law of the two philosophers, however, lies certain latent similarities. First, neither Negri nor Derrida views law as an end in itself, but a means that is almost subservient to an overall aim that, to them, is grander than law. For Negri, law is not the supreme authority; rather, it is shaped by constituent power, which ‘gives rationality and substance to the law.’ Negri then takes this further and states that ‘[t]he only possible concept of constitution is that of revolution’ ; as a result, the function of law is to ‘[give] shape to the temporal flux of the revolution and actively [design] itself on its modality.’ This idea finds its way into Negri’s new definition of institutions: they are ‘defined by conflict and multiplicity, composed of collective habits and practices, and open to transformation by singularities.’ Law, in other words, has no normative foundation/function in and of itself, and neither does it have to be just to serve as the basis of a just society; all it has to do is to conform to the popular and/or revolutionary sentiment of a particular moment, when constituent power takes shape and revolts against the established order. Negri, then, has no interest in reforming the law to address the oppression and injustices which he perceives are embedded in the existing institutional structures; rather, he seeks to rob law of all of its normative force and cast it in an empty supporting role to a presumably but unproven more just, more equal, ‘constituent power’ that takes centre stage.
I'm so pleased with that last sentence. Unfortunately, I don't think it makes any sense.
4.01 a.m.: I am so tired. I want to fucking kill myself. Last point. LAST. POINT.
4.33 a.m.: I give up.