It is argued that only the embedding of Rawlsian political liberalism within a republican framework secures the content of his view against Cohen's critique of Rawlsian special incentives. That content is fully specified in the form of a property-owning democracy; only this background set of institutions (or one functionally equivalent to it) will secure the stability of Rawls's egalitarian principles. A liberal-republicanism, rather than political liberalism alone, offers deeper grounding for our commitment to a property-owning democracy as a (...) privileged political economy for the expression of our egalitarian ideals. (shrink)
What do we talk about when we talk about ethical diversity as a challenge to the normative justifiability of liberal democracy? Many theorists claim that liberal democracy ought to be reformed or rejected for not being sufficiently ‘inclusive’ towards diversity; others argue that, on the contrary, liberalism is desirable because it accommodates (some level of) diversity. Moreover, it has been argued that concern for diversity should lead us to favour (say) neutralistic over perfectionist, universalistic over particularistic, participative over (...) representative versions of liberal democracy. This paper provides a conceptual framework to situate those debates, and argues that there are two fundamental ways in which diversity constitutes a challenge to the justificatory status of liberal democracy: consistency (whereby diversity causes clashes between the prescriptions generated by normative political theories), and adequacy (whereby diversity generates a rift between our experience of what is considered valuable and what the theory treats as such). (shrink)
Deliberation and democratic legitimacy -- Moral pluralism and political consensus -- Associations and democracy (with Joel Rogers) -- Freedom of expression -- Procedure and substance in deliberative democracy -- Directly-deliberative polyarchy (with Charles Sabel) -- Democracy and liberty -- Money, politics, political equality -- Privacy, pluralism, and democracy -- Reflections on deliberative democracy -- Truth and public reason.
Imperialism seems to be deeply antithetical to democracy. Yet, at least one form of imperialism – what I call “hands-off imperialism" – seems to be perfectly compatible with the kind of self-governance commonly thought to be the hallmark of democracy. The solution to this puzzle is to recognize that democracy involves more than self-governance. Rather, it involves what I call self-rule. Self-rule is an example of what Philip Pettit has called a modally demanding value. Modally demanding values (...) are, roughly, values the instantiation of which depends not only on what actually happens, but on what would happen in certain non-actual circumstances. Self-rule is the modally demanding counterpart of self-governance, since it requires, not merely that the members of a state actually govern themselves, but that they would continue to do so across a range of non-actual situations. Moreover, the value of self-rule (and hence democracy) is not reducible to the value of self-governance. Understanding the modally demanding character of democracy allows us to appreciate what is democratically objectionable about occupation by a foreign power, even if there is no prospect of the foreign power intervening in the governance of the occupied state by its members. (shrink)
The subtle and complex relation between Confucianism and modern democracy has long been a controversial issue, and it is now again becoming a topical issue in the process of political modernization in contemporary China. This paper argues that there are some quite basic early Confucian values and principles that are not only compatible with democracy, but also may become the theoretic foundation of modern democracy in China. Early Confucianism considers 'the people's will' as the direct representative of (...) 'Heaven's will', with which it legitimizes political power. Confucian theory of 'human nature is good' endorses equal potential good for every man. These principles can be used in reasoning towards a system of democracy. In terms of decision-making, the Confucian 'Doctrine of the Mean' accords with certain democratic principles. The independent personality and committed individualism advocated by early Confucianism is a required civic merit in a democratic society. These fundamental Confucian principles, through contemporary hermeneutics, may provide a philosophic grounding for democracy and support the construction of a democratic system with a Chinese dimension. To get democracy rooted in the spirit of traditional Chinese culture will benefit the healthy and smooth development of democracy in China. (shrink)
In a recent article, Thomas Christiano defends the intrinsic justice of democracy grounded in the principle of equal consideration of interests. Each citizen is entitled to a single vote, equal in weight to all other citizens. The problem with this picture is that all citizens must meet a threshold of minimal competence. My argument is that Christiano is wrong to claim a minimum threshold of competency is fully consistent with the principle of equality. While standards of minimal competency may (...) be justifiable, these standards justify political inequality. This paper explores the relationship between equality and democracy in terms of minimal competency, demonstrating how minimal competency is justified and why it is inegalitarian in interesting ways. (shrink)
Dewey's book on Democracy and Education established his credentials in the field of education and once counted as his most important book. It has been re-published in many editions and continuously in print ever since the original publication in 1916.
Nearly every major philosophy, from Plato to Hegel and beyond, has argued that democracy is an inferior form of government, at best. Yet, virtually every contemporary political philosophy working today - whether in an analytic or postmodern tradition - endorses democracy in one variety or another. Should we conclude then that the traditional canon is meaningless for helping us theorize about a just state? In this paper, I will take up the criticisms and positive proposals of two such (...) canonical figures in political philosophy: Plato and Hegel. At first glance, each is rather disdainful, if not outright hostile, to democracy. This is also how both have been represented traditionally. However, if we look behind the reasons for their rejection of (Athenian) democracy and the reasons behind their alternatives to democracy, I believe we can uncover a new theory of government that does two things. First, it maps onto the so-called Schumpeterian tradition of elite theories of democracy quite well. Second, perhaps surprisingly, it actually provides an improved justification for democratic government as we practice it today than rival theories of democracy. Thus, not only are Plato and Hegel not enemies of modern democratic thought after all, but each is actually quite useful for helping us develop democratic theory in a positive, not negative, manner. (shrink)
In modern pluralist societies, political disagreement often reflects moral disagreement, as citizens with conflicting perspectives on fundamental values debate the laws that govern their public life. Any satisfactory theory of democracy must provide a way of dealing with this moral disagreement. A fundamental problem confronting all democratic theorists is to find a morally justifiable way of making binding collective decisions in the face of continuing moral conflict.
Abstract: The emergence of cross-border communities and transnational associations requires new ways of thinking about the norms involved in democracy in a globalized world. Given the significance of human rights fulfillment, including social and economic rights, I argue here for giving weight to the claims of political communities while also recognizing the need for input by distant others into the decisions of global governance institutions that affect them. I develop two criteria for addressing the scope of democratization in transnational (...) contexts— common activities and impact on basic human rights —and argue for their compatibility. I then consider some practical implications for institutional transformation and design, including new forms of transnational representation. (shrink)
Education stands at the intersection of Noam Chomsky's two lives as scholar and social critic: As a linguist he is keenly interested in how children acquire language, and as a political activist he views the education system as an important lever of social change. Chomsky on Democracy and Education gathers for the first time his impressive range of writings on these subjects, some previously unpublished and not readily available to the general public. Raised in a progressive school where his (...) father was principal, Chomsky outlines a philosophy of education steeped in the liberal tradition of John Dewey, more concerned with cultivating responsible citizens than feeding children facts. The goal of education, Chomsky argues, is to produce free human beings whose values are not accumulation and domination, but rather free association on terms of equality. Spanning issues of language, power, policy and method, this collection includes seminal theoretical works like Language and Freedom , a social analysis of the role of schools and universities in the American polity, and specific critiques of language instruction in America's classrooms today, along with new interviews conducted by Carlos Otero that serve to encapsulate Chomsky's views. Engaging and incisive, Chomsky on Democracy and Education makes accessible the key insights that have earned Chomsky such a committed following. (shrink)
Democracy can be a means to independently valuable ends and/or it can be intrinsically (or non-instrumentally) valuable. One powerful non-instrumental defence of democracy is based on the idea that only it can publicly justify political authority. I contend that this is an argument about the reasonable acceptability of political authority and about the requirements of publicity and that satisfying these requirements has nothing to do with whether a society is democratic or not. Democracy, then, plays no role (...) in publicly justifying political authority. I also show that any non-instrumental defence of democracy must make claims about what justice requires and make several further claims that require substantial justification. (shrink)
In this paper we critically review recent developments in policies, practices and philosophies pertaining to the mediation between science and the public within the EU and the UK, focusing in particular on the current paradigm of Public Understanding of Science and Technology (PEST) which seeks to depart from the science information-transmission associated with previous paradigms, and enact a deliberative democracy model. We first outline the features of the current crisis in democracy and discuss deliberative democracy as a (...) response to this crisis. We then map out and critically review the broad outlines of recent policy developments in public-science mediation in the EU and UK contexts, focusing on the shift towards the deliberative-democratic model. We conclude with some critical thoughts on the complex interrelationships between democracy, equality, science and informal pedagogies in public-science mediations. We argue that science and democracy operate within distinct value-spheres that are not necessarily consonant with each other. We also problematize the now common dismissal of information-transmission of science as inimical to democratic engagement, and argue for a reassessment of the role and importance of informal science learning for the lay public, provided within the framework of a deliberative democracy that is not reducible to consensus building or the mere expression of opinions rooted in social and cultural givens. This, we argue, can be delivered by a model of PEST that is creative and experimental, with both educational and democratic functions. (shrink)
Negri celebrates a conception of democracy in which the concrete powers of individual humans are not alienated away, but rather are added together: this is a democracy of the multitude. But how can the multitude act without alienating anyone’s power? To answer this difficulty, Negri explicitly appeals to Spinoza. Nonetheless, in this paper, I argue that Spinoza’s philosophy does not support Negri’s project. I argue that the Spinozist multitude avoids internal hierarchy through the mediation of political institutions and (...) not in spite of them; nor do these institutions merely emanate from the multitude as it is, but rather they structure, restrain and channel its passions. In particular, the required institutions are not those of a simple direct democracy. There may be other non-Spinozist arguments on which Negri can ground his theory, but he cannot legitimately defend his conception of the democratic multitude by appeal to Spinoza. (shrink)
Technologies of democracy are instruments based on material apparatus, social practices and expert knowledge that organize the participation of various publics in the definition and treatment of public problems. Using three examples related to the engagement of publics in nanotechnology in France (a citizen conference, a series of public meetings, and an industrial design process), the paper argues that Science and Technology Studies provide useful tools and methods for the analysis of technologies of democracy. Operations of experiments and (...) public demonstrations can be described, as well as controversies about technologies of democracy giving rise to counter-experiments and counter-demonstrations. The political value of the analysis of public engagement lies in the description of processes of stabilization of democratic orders and in the display of potential alternative political arrangements. (shrink)
A central issue in Chinese philosophy today is the relationship between Confucianism and democracy. While some political figures have argued that Confucian values justify non-democratic forms of government, many scholars have argued that Confucianism can provide justification for democracy, though this Confucian democracy will differ substantially from liberal democracy. These scholars believe it is important for Chinese culture to develop its own conception of democracy using Confucian values, drawn mainly from Kongzi (Confucius) and Mengzi (Mencius), (...) as the basis. This essay describes some obstacles to this form of Confucian democracy. It argues that considering the political philosophies of Kongzi and Mengzi in the context of their views on personal cultivation reveals that they oppose some of the central assumptions of democracy. They do not trust the public to make good decisions, and advocate government for the people, but not by the people. These philosophies alone cannot generate democracy. (shrink)
This paper generalises the classical Condorcet jury theorem from majority voting over two options to plurality voting over multiple options. The paper further discusses the debate between epistemic and procedural democracy and situates its formal results in that debate. The paper finally compares a number of different social choice procedures for many-option choices in terms of their epistemic merits. An appendix explores the implications of some of the present mathematical results for the question of how probable majority cycles (as (...) in Condorcet's paradox) are in large electorates. (shrink)
While theorizing in distinctly different times, distinctly different cultures, and under distinctly different circumstances, notable philosophical similarities can be drawn between John Dewey and Paulo Freire. This article focuses on two major themes evident in a sample of each philosopher's major works, democracy and experience, and draws theoretical comparisons between the way each philosopher approaches these concepts in terms of definition and application to educational and social practice. The author suggests that, despite some paradigmatic differences, the fundamental definitions and (...) uses of these concepts expressed by both philosophers are largely comparable and complementary. (shrink)
Habermas's conception of deliberative democracy could be fruitfully supplemented with a discussion of the "institutional design" of civil society; for example the architecture of public spaces should be considered. This paper argues that Hegel's discussion of architecture in his 'Aesthetics' can speak to this issue. For Hegel, architecture culminates in the gothic cathedral, because of how it fosters reflection on the part of the worshiper. This discussion suggests the possibility that architecture could foster a similar kind of intersubjective reflection. (...) To make his thoughts more pertinent for current debates, Hegel's views are adapted to fit three contemporary secular institutions. (shrink)
There has been much interest in cosmopolitan models of democracy in recent times. Arguably, the most developed of these is the model articulated by David Held, so it is not surprising that it has received the most attention and criticism. In this paper, I outline Held's model of cosmopolitan democracy and consider the objections Will Kymlicka raises to this account. I argue that Kymlicka's objections do not undermine Held's central claims and that Held's cosmopolitanism remains a very promising (...) model that deserves further attention. (shrink)
Abstract: The cosmopolitan ideal of liberal universalism seems to be at odds with liberalism's insistence on national borders for liberal democratic communities, creating disparate standards of distributive justice for insiders and outsiders. The liberal's dilemma on the question of cosmopolitan justice would seem to be an extension of this broader conundrum of conflicting loyalties of statism and globalism. The challenge for liberalism, then, seems to be to show how the practices of exclusive membership embody the principle of moral equality. While (...) discerning a variety of liberal reasons to give some scope to the claim that statism and globalism need not be an irreconcilable dilemma within liberalism, the essay argues that these reasons fail to provide a satisfactory resolution. Instead, the essay points out, global democracy can be the direction for both a statist and a cosmopolitan liberal, and the two camps a case not of conflicting loyalties but of multiple loyalties. (shrink)
Deliberative democracy is often celebrated and endorsed because of its promise to include, empower, and emancipate otherwise oppressed and excluded social groups through securing their voice and granting them impact in reasoned public deliberation. This article explores the ability of Habermas’ theory of deliberative democracy to accommodate the demands of historically excluded social groups in democratic plural societies. It argues that the inclusive, transformative, and empowering potential of Habermas’ theory of deliberative democracy falters when confronted with particular (...) types of historical injustices. It falters because it pays little attention to the historical dimension of injustices and the demands to which it gives rise. The historical dimension of longstanding injustices, it is argued, gives rise to a set of distinctive demands, such as collective memory of exclusion, acknowledgement of historical injustices, taking responsibility, and offering apology and reparations for causing these injustices, which go beyond the type of democratic inclusion that is often offered by deliberative democracy. Yet, the solution is not to abandon the model of deliberative democracy. Quite the contrary, it remains a valuable basis for forward-looking political decision making. The article concludes that in order to achieve inclusive, empowering and transformative deliberation in consolidated democracies that have experienced historical injustices, the politics of reconciliation is indispensable. (shrink)
Abstract: In this essay a set of principles is defended that yields a determinate allocation of sovereign competences across a global system of territorially nested jurisdictions. All local sovereign competences are constrained by a universal, justiciable human rights regime that also incorporates a conception of cross-border distributive justice and regulates the competence to control immigration for a given territory. Subject to human rights constraints, sovereign competences are allocated according to a conception of global democracy. The proposed allocation scheme can (...) accommodate substantial local autonomy while at the same time ensuring that everyone has a voice in the political decisions that affect his or her interests. The relevant class of affected interests is fully specified. Relevant affects are of two kinds: those that impose norms of governance on individuals, and those that impose external costs on them. The favored sense of "an external cost" is developed and defended. (shrink)
Democracy has difficulties with the rights on non-voters (children, the mentally ill, foreigners etc). Democratic leaders have sometimes acted ethically, contrary to the wishes of voters, e.g. in accepting refugees as immigrants.
The banner of deliberative democracy is attracting increasing numbers of supporters, in both the world's older and newer democracies. This effort to renew democratic politics is widely seen as a reaction to the dominance of liberal constitutionalism. But many questions surround this new project. What does deliberative democracy stand for? What difference would deliberative practices make in the real world of political conflict and public policy design? What is the relationship between deliberative politics and liberal constitutional arrangements? The (...) 1996 publication of Amy Gutmann and Dennis F. Thompsons Democracy and Disagreement was a signal contribution to the ongoing debate over the role of moral deliberation in democratic politics. In Deliberative Politics an all-star cast of political, legal, and moral commentators seek to criticize, extend, or provide alternatives to Gutmann and Thompson's hopeful model of democratic deliberation. The essays discuss the value and limits of moral deliberation in politics, and take up practical policy issues such as abortion, affirmative action, and health care reform. Among the impressive roster of contributors are Norman Daniels, Stanley Fish, William A. Galston, Jane Mansbridge, Cass R. Sunstein, Michael Walzer, and Iris Marion Young, and the editor of the volume, Stephen Macedo. The book concludes with a thoughtful response from Gutmann and Thompson to their esteemed critics. This fine collection is essential reading for anyone who takes seriously the call for a more deliberative politics. (shrink)
This paper reviews and analyses the implications of citizenship thinking for building ethical institutional arrangements for business. The paper looks at various stakeholder groups whose relation with the company changes quite significantly when one starts to conceptualize it in terms of citizenship. Rather than being simply stakeholders, we could see those groups either as citizens, or as other constituencies participating in the administration of citizenship for others, or in societal governance more broadly. This raises crucial questions about accountability and (...) class='Hi'>democracy in stakeholder relations with the corporation. We sketch out the main currents informing and emerging from the citizenship perspective on firm-stakeholder relations; analyze specific stakeholder groups and their particular relevance in the context of a citizenship perspective; and conclude with a discussion of the broader implications in terms of building ethical institutions. (shrink)
This piece criticizes traditional formal and procedural conceptions of democracy, which fail to account for the development of contemporary constitutional democracy. The latter is characterized by a substantive dimension with respect to the content of the decisions taken through the democratic process. The validity of such decision is conditioned by the respect and actualization of fundamental rights, which are established by the constitution. The limits and constraints established by the constitution require juridical science to play a critical and (...) programmatic role vis - à - vis the ‘unlawful’ exercise of public powers, when these enter in contrast with the limits imposed by the constitution. (shrink)
Democracy used to be seen as a relatively mechanical matter of merely adding up everyone's votes in free and fair elections. That mechanistic model has many virtues, among them allowing democracy to 'track the truth', where purely factual issues are all that is at stake. Political disputes invariably mix facts with values, however, and then it is essential to listen to what people are saying rather than merely note how they are voting. The great challenge is how to (...) implement that deliberative ideal among millions of people at once. In this strikingly original book, Goodin offers a solution: 'democratic deliberation within'. Building on models of ordinary conversational dynamics, he suggests that people simply imagine themselves in the position of various other people they have heard or read about and ask, 'What would they say about this proposal?' Informing the democratic imaginary then becomes the key to making deliberations more reflective - more empathetic, more considered, more expansive across time and distance. (shrink)
Human beings originate votes, and democracy constitutes decisions. This is the essence of democracy. A phenomenological analysis of the vote and of the decision reveals for us the inherent strength of democracy and its deficiencies. Alexis de Tocqueville pioneered this form of enquiry into democracy and produced positive results from it. Unfortunately, his phenomenological method was inadequate and he missed the essential core of his 'associative art'. The frequent association of democracy with rationality misleads us (...) about its nature and its requirements. The phenomenology of democracy aligns with the governance concept of democracy. Many attempts to reform democracy, or impose it on others, are misplaced because they do not attend to the essence of democracy. (shrink)
The idea of “promoting democracy” is one that goes in and out of favor. With the advent of the so-called “Arab Spring”, the idea of promoting democracy abroad has come up for discussion once again. Yet an important recent line of thinking about human rights, starting with John Rawls’s book The Law of Peoples, has held that there is no human right to democracy, and that nondemocratic states that respect human rights should be “beyond reproach” in the (...) realm of international relations. This is, for obvious reasons, a controversial view, especially given the powerful and important arguments purporting to show that democracies do significantly better than nondemocracies in promoting internal peace and equality, and in engaging in peaceful international cooperation. Both proponents and opponents of the Rawlsian view of human rights have argued that the view implies that democracies may not “promote democracy” in nondemocratic societies. But, given that all parties to this dispute agree that democracy is necessary for justice, and given the important instrumental goods provided by democracy, the Rawlsian view has seemed deeply implausible to many. -/- In this paper I blunt this challenge to the Rawlsian view by showing how, even if there is no human right to democracy, we may still rightfully promote democracy in a number of ways and cases. Showing this requires investigation of what it means to “promote democracy”, and a more careful inspection of when various methods of promoting democracy are appropriate than has been done by most political theorists working on human rights. When we look carefully, we can see that in some instances acceptable forms of promoting democracy are compatible with the Rawlsian view of human rights, and that this view is therefore not vulnerable to the “instrumentalist” challenge. We also see how, if political philosophy is to be useful, it must be less abstract and look closely at actual cases. -/- This paper posted by permission of the Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Junior University. For information visit the Stanford University website. (shrink)
Is there a ‘constitutional moment’in contemporary Europe? What if anything is the constitution of the European Union; what kind of polity is the Union? The suggestion offered is that there is a legally constituted order, and that a suitable term to apply to it is a ‘commonwealth’, comprising a commonwealth of ‘post-sovereign’ states. Is it a democratic commonwealth, and can it be? Is there sufficiently a demos or ‘people’ for democracy to be possible? If not democratic, what is it? (...) Monarchy, oligarchy, or democracy, or a ‘mixed constitution’? Argued: there is a mixed constitution containing a reasonable element of democratic rule. The value of democracy is then explored in terms of individualistic versus holistic evaluation and instrumental versus intrinsic value. Subsidiarity can be considered in a similar light, suggestively in terms of forms of democracy appropriate to different levels of self-government. The conclusion is that there is no absolute democratic deficit in the European commonwealth. (shrink)
The two most influential traditions of contemporary theorizing about democracy, social choice theory and deliberative democracy, are generally thought to be at loggerheads, in that the former demonstrates the impossibility, instability or meaninglessness of the rational collective outcomes sought by the latter. We argue that the two traditions can be reconciled. After expounding the central Arrow and Gibbard-Satterthwaite impossibility results, we reassess their implications, identifying the conditions under which meaningful democratic decision making is possible. We argue that deliberation (...) can promote these conditions, and hence that social choice theory suggests not that democratic decision making is impossible, but rather that democracy must have a deliberative aspect. (shrink)
The article presents an introduction to the Special Issue on the French philosopher Jacques Rancière who raises a provocative voice in the current public debate on democracy, equality and education. Instead of merely criticizing current practices and discourses, the attractiveness of Rancière's work is that he does try to formulate in a positive way what democracy is about, how equality can be a pedagogic or educational (instead of policy) concern, and what the public and democratic role of education (...) is. His work opens up a space to rethink and to study, as well as to 're-practice', what democracy and equality in education are about. He questions the current neutralisation of politics that is motivated by a hatred of democracy. This questioning is for Rancière also a struggle over words. Against the old philosophical dream of defining the meaning of words, Rancière underlines the need for the struggle over their meaning. The aim of the article is to clarify how and why education, equality, and democracy are a major concern throughout his work and to offer an introduction to the articles collected in the Special Issue. (shrink)
The political unconscious -- Modernity's traumas -- Targeting the public sphere -- The repetition compulsion or the endless war on terror -- Recovering community -- Deliberative democracy -- Feminist theory, politics, and freedom -- Public knowledge -- Three models of democratic deliberation -- The limits of deliberation, democratic myths, new frontiers -- Media and the public sphere -- Epilogue.
The Arab Spring of 2011 has highlighted an unprecedent fact in the region: it was the young and educated population who established the spearheading of change, and led their countries to democracy. In this paper, we try to analyze how science has been a key factor in these moves, in Tunisia as well as in Egypt, and how it can help to anchor democracy in these countries.
This article starts from the observation that in classical Athens the discovery of democracy as a normative model of politics has been from the beginning not only a political and a legal but at the same time a philosophical enterprise. Reflections on the concept of criminal law and on the meaning of punishment can greatly benefit from reflections on Athenian democracy as a germ for our contemporary debate on criminal justice in a democracy. Three main characteristics of (...) the Athenian model will be analysed: the self-instituting capacity of a democracy based on participatory and reflective citizenship, political power as the capacity of citizens for co-operating and co-acting with others, and the crime of hubris as one of the key issues in Athenian criminal law. These analyses will lead to the conclusion that one of the key issues of a democratic legal order lies in its capacity of recognizing the fragility of the human condition and of developing workable and effective standards of justice in that context. A relational conception of criminal law and punishment, based on proportionality, reflexivity, mutual respect and responsibility fits best with a democracy under the rule of law. (shrink)
One of the key questions to have exercised green political theorists in recent years concerns the relationship of the environment 'agenda' and democracy. Both environmentalists and democrats have a tendency to think of each other as natural bedfellows but in fact there is little theoretical or practical reason why they should be. Indeed some theorists have argued that the environmental movement has grown from fundamentally authoritarian roots and it is arguable that the only really effective way of implementing environmental (...) politics is by imposing them in an authoritarian manner. This book deals with the tensions between democracy and environmentalism from a variety of theoretical and empirical perspectives. (shrink)
From a historical point of view, theuniversity as an institution has had the roleof educating an elite, rather than any obvioustask of enforcing democracy. But what kind ofexpectations regarding citizenship anddemocracy can we justifiably have when it comesto the role of higher education and ouruniversities today when higher education isundergoing a process of massification. Couldthe university eventually become a place fordeliberative communication, developingdeliberative qualities among its many students?According to the contributions presented here âstemming from a conference on the theme``Higher (...) education, democracy and citizenship'',held at Ãrebro university, Sweden 2000 âthe answer is yes, to some extent, if there isroom for pluralism in different dimensions,opportunities to challenge one's own tradition,and tolerance and respect for the concreteother. (shrink)
This short paper summarizes the main line of argument in my book, *A Pragmatist Philosophy of Democracy* (Routledge, 2007), which is the subject of a forthcoming symposium issue of the journal *Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society*.
The aim of this paper is to consider whether some seats in a democratically elected legislative assembly ought to be reserved for representatives of future generations. In order to examine this question, I will propose a new democratic model for representing posterity. It is argued that this model has several advantages compared with a model for the democratic representation of future people previously suggested by Andrew Dobson. Nevertheless, the democratic model that I propose confronts at least two difficult problems. First, (...) it faces insoluble problems of representative legitimacy. Second, one might question whether this model provides a reasonably effective way to represent future interests compared with existing representative democratic institutions. Despite such problems, it is argued that political representation of posterity can be defended on the basis of fundamental ideas and ideals in recent theory of deliberative democracy. The first reason for this is that in a number of cases democratic decisions cannot be regarded as normatively legitimate from the point of view of deliberative democracy, unless posterity is given a voice. The second reason is that representation of posterity can contribute to more rational and impartial deliberations and decisions in legislative assemblies. (shrink)
The green movement has posed some tough questions for traditional justifications of democracy. Should the natural world have rights? Can we take account of the interests of future generation? Do we need to replace existing institutions to deal with the ecological crisis? But questions have also been asked of the greens. Could their idealism undermine democracy? Can greens be effective democrats? Democracy and Green Political Thought, leading writers on green political thought analyze these and other important questions, (...) examine the discourse of green movements concerning democracy, the status of democracy within green political thought, and the political institutions which might be necessary to ensure democracy in a sustainable society. The debates are not simply about the compatibility of democracy with green ideas but also how best to define democracy itself. (shrink)
This volume collects some of the leading essays in contemporary democratic theory published in the past thirty years. The anthology presents the work of a select group of contributors (including Peter Singer, Joshua Cohen, Ronald Dworkin, Richard Arneson, and others) and covers many foundational approaches defended by scholars from a range of different disciplines. The chapters address many issues that are central to philosophical reflections on democracy, such as questions pertaining to deliberative and economic approaches, as well as to (...) such topics as intrinsic fairness, the role of equality in relation to minority groups, and the limits of democracy. Covering representative work in economics, political science, legal theory, and philosophy, this comprehensive volume is suited to courses in political theory and political philosophy. (shrink)
Listening closely to the religious pitch in Rousseau's voice, Cladis convincingly shows that Rousseau, when attempting to portray the most characteristic aspects of the public and private, reached for a religious vocabulary. Honoring both love of self and love of that which is larger than the self--these twin poles, with all the tension between them--mark Rousseau's work, vision and challenge--the challenge of 21st-century democracy.
The relations between the majority and minorities in a democracy have been standardly viewed as the main subject matter of toleration: the majority should refrain from using its dominant position to interfere with some minorities’ practices or beliefs despite its dislike or disapproval of such practices or beliefs. Can the idea of toleration provide us with the necessary resources to understand and respond to the problems arising out of majority/minorities relations in a democracy? We reply in the negative (...) and make two main claims: first, that resorting to toleration is not enough to make sense of the problems deriving from the unequal participation of minorities in society, and, second, that it risks sanctioning the asymmetric relation between the majority and minorities informed by the negative judgement of the former towards some belief or practice of the latter. We suggest resorting instead to the idea of equal opacity respect for persons: all persons should be treated equally as moral agents, in accordance with their equally possessing the capacity for self-legislation, and as if they were opaque to our judgement for all those properties of theirs which exceed moral agency. Looking at the majority/minorities relations through such a lens enables us to understand (and appropriately respond to) what is problematic in such relations: the majority often fails to treat minorities as moral agents by failing to take their voices into account on an equal footing, by seeing them merely as recipients of certain provisions affecting them rather than their authors, and by considering them as legitimately exposed to the majority’s (negative) judgment. The purchase of our argument is illustrated by reference to two minorities whose treatment is paradigmatic of the problematic nature of majority/minorities relations across Europe: Muslims and Roma. (shrink)