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Remembering Hannah Arendt in the “Post-truth” Era

In this paper I shall glance at Hannah Arendt’s arguments about lying in politics that are frequently evoked in relation to ‘post-truth’ politics. To do so, first of all I will begin with her discussion of totalitarianism with regard to lying, and then with her two articles, Truth and Politics (originally written in 1967) and Lying in Politics (originally written in 1971), I will try to point to her account of the relation between lying and politics, especially in democracy. While doing this I will briefly touch on her ideas of political action, judgement, and witness in relation to the problem of lying. In conclusion, I shall try to point out Arendt’s general account of lying and its impasses that still haunt today’s debate on post-truth politics.


H. Arendt, Lying, Politics, Post-truth, Witness, Judgement.


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