In reflecting on the ‘dual perspective’ of force and consent, Antonio Gramsci recognised that ‘two things are absolutely necessary for the life of a State: arms and religion . . . force and consent, coercion and persuasion, State and Church, political society and civil society, politics and morals . . . law and freedom, order and discipline . . . violence and fraud’ (Q6§87). My attention was drawn to this commentary by Jonathan Davies (with many thanks) that, in a nutshell, reveals how hegemony for Gramsci is always about the combination of coercion and consent, evoking the half-animal and half-human aspects of Machiavelli’s Centaur. For Gramsci, this came to be famously rendered as ‘State = political society + civil society, in other words hegemony protected by the armour of coercion’ (Q6§88).