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)
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.
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)
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.
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)
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)
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)
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)
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)
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 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 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)
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)
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 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.
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)
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)
The negativity of nature -- Perfectible man as the subject of lack -- Constructing political identities -- The ethics of democracy -- Rethinking the universal -- Constructing the general will -- The democratic paradox: the legislator -- Rousseau's radical democracy.
What is the optimal political framework for environmental reform reform on a scale commensurate with the global ecological crisis? In particular, how adequate are liberal forms of parliamentary democracy to the challenge posed by this crisis? These are the questions pondered by the contributors to this volume. Exploration of the possibilities of democracy gives rise to certain common themes. These are the relation between ecological morality and political structures or procedures and the question of the structure of decision-making (...) and distribution of information in political systems. The idea of 'democracy without traditional boundaries' is discussed as a key both to environmentalism in an age of global ecology and to the revitalisation of democracy itself in a world of increasingly protean constituencies and mutable boundaries. (shrink)
This chapter examines a foundational democratic practice by considering how it expresses concepts of the Enlightenment. The practice is that of the vote or plebiscite as it appears in governance. The leading enlightenment concept is rationality as it is expounded by Kant. Kant did not participate in national democratic processes. He expected decisions of any consequence to be made in Berlin and thrived when his City was invaded by the Russians and their officers became his students, until they left suddenly (...) in 1762 (Kuehn, 2001, p.126). Kant participated in political debate where the issues were in the main constitutional and about the processes of government reform. He became known for his theory of natural law and the justification of positive law. He advocated the separation of powers, but denied the right of revolution. This latter onclusion was in apparent contradiction of his support for republicanism, including the French, English, and American revolutions (Beck, 1971, p.413). The term “republican” in Kant’s writings is sometimes interpreted to mean “parliamentary democracy”. This is probably a mistake, and Reiss suggests Kant’s term does not carry the “connotation” of modern Western democracy (Reiss's "Introduction" in Kant, 1991a, p.25). Kant himself wrote that he wanted to prevent “the republican constitution from being confused with the democratic one, as commonly happens” (Kant, 1991a, .100). So it is that, whilst Kant wrote about the interaction of morality and politics, he did not write on the topic of the present chapter which focuses on those mechanisms or mechanics that democracy displays when it works. (shrink)
Post-foundational politics and democracy -- Agonism and democracy -- A typology of agonistic democracy -- Agonistic democracy and the question of institutions -- Agonistic democracy and the limits of popular participation -- Populism, representation, and the popular will -- Political liberalism, contingency and agonistic pluralism -- Liberalism, agonism, and democracy.
The democratic age -- A brief history of human liberty -- The twisted path -- Illiberal democracy -- The Islamic exception -- Too much of a good thing -- The death of authority -- The way out -- The 51st state.
Preface -- Introduction -- How to value democracy -- Paper stones, the ethics of participation -- Philosophers-citizens -- Superdeliberators -- What is it like to be a citizen? -- Democracy's ethics of belief -- The division of democratic labor -- Representing principles -- Democratic complicity -- Not in my name, macrodemocratic design.
Americans have an unwavering faith in democracy and are ever eager to import it to nations around the world. But how democratic is our own "democracy"? If you can vote, if the majority rules, if you have elected representatives--does this automatically mean that you have a democracy? In this eye-opening look at an ideal that we all take for granted, classical scholar Paul Woodruff offers some surprising answers to these questions. Drawing on classical literature, philosophy, and history--with (...) many intriguing passages from Sophocles, Aesop, and Plato, among others--Woodruff immerses us in the world of ancient Athens to uncover how the democratic impulse first came to life. The heart of the book isolates seven conditions that are the sine qua non of democracy: freedom from tyranny (including the tyranny of majority rule), harmony (the blending of different views), the rule of law, natural equality, citizen wisdom, reasoning without knowledge, and general education. He concludes that a true democracy must be willing to invite everyone to join in government. It must respect the rule of law so strongly that even the government is not above the law. True democracy must be mature enough to accept changes that come from the people. And it must be willing to pay the price of education for thoughtful citizenship. Ancient Athens didn't always live up to these ideals. Nor does modern America. If we learn anything from the story of Athens, Woodruff concludes, it should be this--never lose sight of the ideals of democracy. This compact, eloquent book illuminates these ideals and lights the way as we struggle to keep democracy alive at home and around the world. (shrink)
The photographer and reformer Jacob Riis once wrote, “I have seen an armful of daisies keep the peace of a block better than a policeman and his club.” Riis was not alone in his belief that beauty could tame urban chaos, but are aesthetic experiences always a social good? Could aesthetics also inspire violent crime, working-class unrest, and racial murder? To answer these questions, Russ Castronovo turns to those who debated claims that art could democratize culture—civic reformers, anarchists, novelists, civil (...) rights activists, and college professors—to reveal that beauty provides unexpected occasions for radical, even revolutionary, political thinking. B eautiful Democracy explores the intersection of beauty and violence by examining university lectures and course materials on aesthetics from a century ago along with riots, acts of domestic terrorism, magic lantern exhibitions, and other public spectacles. Philosophical aesthetics, realist novels, urban photography, and black periodicals, Castronovo argues, inspired and instigated all sorts of collective social endeavors, from the progressive nature of tenement reform to the horrors of lynching. Discussing Jane Addams, W.E.B. Du Bois, Charlie Chaplin, William Dean Howells, and Riis as aesthetic theorists in the company of Kant and Schiller, Beautiful Democracy ultimately suggests that the distance separating academic thinking and popular wisdom about social transformation is narrower than we generally suppose. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: 1. Introduction: class, liberty, and popular government; Part I: 2. Peoples, patricians, and the prince; 3. Democratic republics and the oppressive appetite of young nobles; Part II: 4. The benefits and limits of popular participation and judgment; 5. Elections, lotteries and class specific institutions; 6. Political trials and 'the free way of life'; Part III: 7. Republicanism and democracy; 8. Post-electoral republics and the people's tribunate revived.
Increased attention to the relationship between democracy and education in the UK has been accompanied over the past thirteen years by an interest in how art can be used to promote democratic citizenship. While this approach has led to increased funding for the arts, it is not without its problems, and has often entailed an apolitical and instrumentalist view of both art and education. This paper turns to the political philosophy of Mouffe and Rancière, the work of Rancière in (...) aesthetics, and Biesta's educational philosophy to develop an alternative way of understanding the significance of art for democracy and education. Building on their work, I take a performative and collective view of democratic subjectivity as the basis on which to construct this alternative understanding. I further argue that this conceptualisation can aid our understanding of democratic learning and our ability to provide opportunities for it through art and educational practice. (shrink)
Beginning with a reconsideration of what the school is and has been, this paper explores the idea of the school to come. Emphasizing the governmental role of education in modernity, I offer a line of thinking that calls into question the assumption of both the school and education as possible conduits for either democracy or social justice. Drawing on Derrida’s spectral ontology I argue that any automatic correlation of education with democracy is misguided: especially within redemptive discourses that (...) seek to liberate education from its present enclosure. This rereading of the field of education in the light of an account of the fundamental ontology of its key institution problematizes all rhetorics of education as social salvation. Education, it proposes, cannot be conceived as the ideal soul of a corrupted or as yet defective body, the school. Education—having taken on the character of an ontotheological principle—has become a governmental instrument as much as its specific institutions. This ontological condition can be understood within various accounts of the nature of contemporaneity. This paper considers the monstrous proposal that education be abandoned as the grounds for social, ethical and cultural redemption. The good news is that this abandonment opens the possibility for thinking beyond education, a beyond that is also beyond the strictures of instrumental rationality. (shrink)
In this paper we argue that Sen's defence of liberal democracy suffers from a moralistic and pro-liberal bias that renders it unable to take pluralism as seriously as it professes to do. That is because Sen’s commitment to respecting pluralism is not matched by his account of how to individuate the sorts of preferences that ought to be included in democratic deliberation. Our argument generalises as a critique of the two most common responses to the fact of pluralism in (...) contemporary (i.e. post-Rawls) liberalism: a broadly procedural understanding of autonomy and the idea of deliberative democracy. That is to say, the difficulties with pluralism we identify can be traced back to the particular version of Kantian deontology prevalent in contemporary liberalism, and to the equally prevalent aspiration to ground political legitimacy in a moralised consensus. (shrink)
Building on the work of philosopher John Dewey, Bray develops an approach to transnational democracy called "pragmatic cosmopolitanism." He argues for an ideal of representative democracy that emphasizes the role of democratic leadership and the development of critical intelligence.
This volume presents influential work by Nicholas Wolterstorff at the intersection between political philosophy and religion, alongside nine new essays on the nature of liberal democracy, human rights, and political authority.
Approaching the concept of multilateral democracy -- The transnational dimension of liberal democracy -- Multilateral democracy from a republican point of view -- The conception of the people in multilateral democracy -- The rational case for multilateralism -- Multilateral democracy: the original position -- Principles of multilateral democracy -- Final remarks.
William E. Connolly’s writings have pushed the leading edge of political theory, first in North America and then in Europe as well, for more than two decades now. This book draws on his numerous influential books and articles to provide a coherent and comprehensive overview of his significant contribution to the field of political theory. The book focuses in particular on three key areas of his thinking: Democracy: his work in democratic theory - through his critical challenges to the (...) traditions of Rawlsian theories of justice and Habermasian theories of deliberative democracy - has spurred the creation of a fertile and powerful new literature Pluralism - Connolly's work utterly transformed the terrain of the field by helping to resignify pluralism: from a conservative theory of order based on the status quo into a radical theory of democratic contestation based on a progressive political vision The Terms of Political Theory - Connolly has changed the language in which Anglo-American political theory is spoken, and entirely shuffled the pack with which political theorists work. (shrink)
Aesthetic Democracy argues that art and the aesthetic in general are the founding condition of the possibility of establishing social and political democracy. The book examines contemporary criticism and finds that it is historically shaped by colonialism, and that it sets up an opposition of east and west that shapes all contemporary cultural politics. The author argues for a way of outwitting this potentially dangerous struggle of east and west grounded in an aestheticism and a validation of sensory (...) experience. Docherty proposes a new model of cultural critique, based on a revitalized and positively valorized notion of “hypocrisy,” whose roots lie in Machiavelli, but whose contemporary strength lies in its potential for an ethical encounter with alterity as such. (shrink)
While much has been written about social justice, even more has been written about democracy. Rarely is the relationship between social justice and democracy carefully considered. Does justice require democracy? Will democracy bring justice? This volume brings together leading authors who consider the relationship of democracy and justice. The intrinsic justness of democracy is challenged and the relationship between justice, democracy and the common good examined.
Introduction: "we are all Egypt" -- The allure of commonality -- Sharing the world in common with others -- Imagining the demos: sharing identity in feminist and democratic theory -- Politicizing the demos: sharing affect as self-conscious world-building -- Pluralizing the demos: sharing agency and the dilemma of democratic exclusion -- "This is what democracy looks like": protests as democratic imaginary.
Similarities between pragmatist models of democracy and deliberative models have been explored over recent years, most notably in this journal ( Talisse 2004). However, the work of Iris Marion Young has, thus far, not figured in such comparative analyses and historical weighing of pragmatist antecedents in deliberativist work. In what follows, I wish to redress this oversight by placing Young in conversation with John Dewey and Jane Addams. Young's particular brand of deliberative theorizing focuses on the inclusion of women (...) and all those deemed Other in our democracies. She identifies a significant shortcoming in standard expositions of deliberative thought, pointing out that communicative style, structured by oppressive norms of gender, race, and class, to name but a few, may serve to undermine our full participation in political decision making. While this forms a valuable insight for those seeking to redress the exclusion of Others in democracies, it also draws attention to the centrality of differences of communication in deliberative settings. In what follows, I will highlight the integral role played by communication in Young's and Dewey's expositions of democracy while showing that Addams foreshadows Young's principal insight through an appreciation of communicative difference and its attendant political implications. (shrink)
The Homeric world.--The world after Homer.--The age of Pericles.--The decline of democracy.--The rise of the prince.--The Achaean league.--The early days of Rome.--The ascendancy of the Roman Senate.--The end of the republic.--Children of nature and fortunate isles.--Index.
Introduction -- Methodology : an approach to philosophical analysis -- Fukuyama I : the concept of a history with universal direction and end point -- Fukuyama II : why does history end in liberal democracy? -- Postmodern perspectives on the flow of time -- Questioning the universality of human nature -- The myth of the individual : how "I" is constructed and gives an account of itself -- A theory of a history which ends in liberal democracy through (...) a reading of Fukuyama and postmodernism. (shrink)
Although the modern age is often described as the age of democratic revolutions, the subject of popular foundings has not captured the imagination of contemporary political thought. Most of the time, democratic theory and political science treat as the object of their inquiry normal politics, institutionalized power, and consolidated democracies. The aim of Andreas Kalyvas' study is to show why it is important for democratic theory to rethink the question of its beginnings. Is there a founding unique to democracies? Can (...) a democracy be democratically established? What are the implications of expanding democratic politics in light of the question of whether and how to address democracy's beginnings? Kalyvas addresses these questions and scrutinizes the possibility of democratic beginnings in terms of the category of the extraordinary, as he reconstructs it from the writings of Max Weber, Carl Schmitt, and Hannah Arendt and their views on the creation of new political, symbolic, and constitutional orders. (shrink)
This book examines the political and international thought of Harold Laski (1893-1950). The early chapters discuss his socialist critique of politics within states, paying close attention to the turbulent environment of the early to mid-twentieth century. His ideas on democracy, rights, freedom and sovereignty are closely analyzed and clarified. The book goes on to discuss the way in which he applied many of his political ideas to the analysis of international politics. The final chapter investigates the contemporary significance of (...) his work. Laski will be of interest to scholars today who explore the overlapping themes of political and international thought. (shrink)
The political institutions under which we live today evolved from a revolutionary idea that shook the world in the second part of the eighteenth century: that a people should govern itself. Yet if we judge contemporary democracies by the ideals of self-government, equality, and liberty, we find that democracy is not what it was dreamt to be. This book addresses central issues in democratic theory by analyzing the sources of widespread dissatisfaction with democracies around the world. With attention throughout (...) to historical and cross-national variations, the focus is on the generic limits of democracy in promoting equality, effective participation, control of governments by citizens, and liberty. The conclusion is that although some of this dissatisfaction has good reasons, some is based on an erroneous understanding of how democracy functions. Hence, although the analysis identifies the limits of democracy, it also points to directions for feasible reforms. (shrink)
Taking insights from the philosophy of science and technology, theories of participatory democracy and Critical Theory, the author tackles and explores how democratic participation in scientific research and technological innovation could be possible, as a deliberative means of improving the rational basis for the development of modern society.
Email and ethics -- Causation and laws of nature -- Internalism and epistemology -- Einstein, relativity, and absolute simultaneity -- Epistemology modalized -- Truth and speech acts -- Fiction, narrative, and knowledge -- A pragmatist philosophy of democracy.
This paper foregrounds one argument in Rawls’s work that is crucial to his case for one, determinate, form of political economy: a property-owning democracy. Section one traces the evolution of this idea from the seminal work of Cambridge economist James Meade; section two demonstrates how a commitment to a property-owning democracy flows from Rawls’s own principles; section three focuses on Rawls’s striking critique of orthodox welfare state capitalism. This all sets the stage for an argument, presented in section (...) four, from the complexity of economic interactions to the strategy of making markets fair in the only feasible way that they can be made fair, namely, by “patterning” their effects. Section five concludes by asking whether any scheme of this general type is a realistic form of utopianism for a society such as ours. (shrink)
What kind of challenge does sexual and racial difference pose for postmodern ethics? What is the relation between ethical obligation and feminist interpretations of embodiment, passion, and eros? How can we negotiate between ethical responsibility for the Other and democratic struggles against domination, injustice, and equality, on the one hand, and internal conflicts within the subject, on the other? We cannot address such questions, Ziarek argues, without putting into dialogue discourses that have hitherto been segregated: postmodern ethics, feminism, race theory, (...) and the idea of radical democracy. Addressing a constellation of diverse thinkers - including Emmanuel Levinas, Patricia Williams, Jean-François Lyotard, Michel Foucault, Frantz Fanon, Julia Kristeva, and Luce Irigaray - the author proposes a new conception of ethics, an ethics of dissensus that rethinks the relation between freedom and obligation in a double context of embodiment and antagonism. (shrink)
This article constructs a critical historical, political and theoretical analysis of the essence of Fascist criminal law discourse in terms of the violence that shaped and characterised it. The article examines the significance of violence in key declarations about the role and purpose of criminal law by Alfredo Rocco, Fascist Minister of Justice and leading ideologue, in his principal speech on the final draft of the 1930 Italian Penal Code. It is grounded on the premise that criminal law is particularly (...) significant for understanding the relationship between State power and individuals, and so what was distinctive about Fascist thinking in this regard. The article analyses Rocco’s declarations as a discourse in order to highlight their contextual foundations, construction and ideological connections. It argues that the core theme of that discourse is violence, which has three principal dimensions: a close historical and rhetorical connection with war, a focus on repressive and intimidatory force, and a paramount concern with subordinating individuals to State interests. The article then uses this analysis to develop a theoretical reading of the nexus between criminal law and violence in Fascism, in terms of its foundations and reversal of ends and means. The article thus provides an original perspective on Fascism and criminal law, which it argues is important for critical engagement with criminal law discourse in our democracies today. (shrink)
This paper approaches "multiculturalism" obliquely via conceptions of social and political pluralism in the pragmatist tradition. As a matter of social analysis, the advent of multiculturalism implies some loss of confidence in our prior conceptions of accommodating ethnic, social, and religious diversity: the conversion of traditional American cultural diversity into a war of political interest groups. This, and the corresponding tendency toward cultural relativism and "anything goes," is fundamentally a product of over-centralization and cultural-political exhaustion in the wake of the (...) long ordeal of the Cold War. An over-emphasis on the political, and national centralization, has pressured our cultural variety toward more political forms, and "multiculturalism" is both product and backlash.<br><br> Many issues connected with the general theme of multiculturalism parallel philosophical debates on objectivity and the diversity of cultural perspectives. Successful treatments of these themes, drawing on the pragmatist tradition, need to be developed and applied to contemporary problems. The general approach here emphasizes a relative autonomy of religious, ethnic, and cultural-racial groups, the need to be wary of both exclusion and self-insulation, and the roles of individuals in mediating group differences. In the concluding section, specific issues relating religious pluralism and secularism will be addressed.<br><br>. (shrink)
This essay argues that Dworkin, Feinberg and others who claim exceptions against the principle of paternalism for the sake of preventing seroius physical harm are forced to treat mature adults as mental incompetents and that they are forced to do so by the prevailing concept of paternalism itself. The essay then shows how we can get around this dilemma by re-thinking paternalism as part of distinctly paternal relationships of domination and inequality.
This essay proposes a re-evaluation of Dewey's work with emphasis upon the ability of his philosophy to effect a realistic reformulation and development of America's tradition of humanistic liberalism. Dewey combines the tough-minded realism (or naturalism), congenial to the scientific orientation of American philosophy, with a firm conviction of the need of values and revaluation in community life. I draw on recent work of Hilary Putnam on Dewey and argue for the viability of Dewey's conception of value inquiry. The value (...) of Dewey's work to American liberalism extends beyond the version of liberalism, from the 1930's and the 1940's with which is name is most closely associated. (shrink)
The problem of historical injustice presents a deep challenge to the aspirations of deliberative democrats, especially to those “deliberative activists” who seek to advance deliberation in deeply unjust circumstances (Fung 2005, 399). But the debate over historical injustice can itself beneﬁ t from taking a “democratic turn.” Much of the literature is dominated by arguments over historical entitlement theories of justice or by a legalistic focus on the possibilities for compensation and reparation.1 That much of it is deeply skeptical as (...) well is no surprise given that focus. But what is striking about actual debates over historical injustice in the world today is their intensely political character, and this character needs to be theorized much more explicitly when thinking about the nature and consequences of historical injustice. One crucial aspect of political disagreement, as opposed to moral disagreement, is that it is not just the force of good reasons that is at issue but also the application of force itself, especially by the state. The conclusion of a political deliberation does not necessarily indicate that the other side is.. (shrink)
W.V.Quine and Philip Kitcher have both developed naturalistic approaches to the philosophy of science which are partially based on a skeptical view about the possibility of rational inquiry into certain questions of value. Nonetheless, both Quine and Kitcher do not wish to give up on the normative dimension of the philosophy of science. I argue that Kitcher's recent argument against the specification of the goal of science in terms of truth raises a problem for Quine's account of the normative dimensions (...) of the discipline. However Kitcher’s alternative suggestion, that the goal of science is to be specified in terms of an ideal democratic procedure, does not escape this problem, given Kitcher's own limited skepticism about rational inquiry into certain questions of value. (shrink)
Presentazione del curatore italiano (C.Corradetti): È possibile conciliare il pluralismo culturale con la dimensione pubblica della deliberazione? Partendo dall’analisi critica di Rawls e Habermas, James Bohman offre una risposta innovativa alla questione dell’accordo democratico. In tale proposta, parallelamente al rigetto di soluzioni meramente strategiche, viene riabilitata la nozione di compromesso morale nel quadro di un accordo normativo. Mantenendo fede ad una prospettiva composta da elementi normativi e fattuali, l’autore si propone di ampliare le opportunità democratiche nella riconciliazione tra conflitti culturali (...) profondi propri delle società contemporanee. L’elemento civico partecipativo risulta essere dunque una componente essenziale per la produzione di una sfera pubblica vibrante. Ne emerge una ricostruzione convincente volta non solo a respingere le critiche degli scettici sulle reali possibilità d’inclusività democratica, ma diretta soprattutto a suggerire un più efficace modello deliberativo per la garanzia della stabilità sociale. Questo testo è diventato ormai un riferimento internazionale classico nella discussione sul tema della deliberazione pubblica. L’autore ha inoltre sviluppato in ambito post-nazionale il suo modello deliberativo senza tuttavia ridiscutere i fondamenti concettuali della sua proposta teorica qui enunciati.Vista la rilevanza del tema e considerata la centralità del testo proposto, sembrerebbe dunque auspicabile rendere il testo disponibile anche al lettore italiano. (shrink)
Basic concepts in Habermas's theory of communicative action -- Habermas's "reconstruction" of modern law -- Discourse theory and the theory and practice of adjudication -- System, lifeworld, and Habermas's "communication theory of society" -- After between facts and norms : religion in the public square, multiculturalism, and the "postnational constellation".
This work provides a reflective assessment of recent developments, social relevance and future of environmental political theory, concluding that although the alleged pacification of environmentalism is more than skin deep, it is not yet quite deep enough. This book will appeal to students and researchers of social science and philosophers with an interest in environmental issues.
The present article is devoted to the problem which is debated actively to-day, namely whether Greek poleis and the Roman Republic were early states or they represented a specific type of stateless societies. In particular, Moshe Berent examines this problem by the example of Athens in his contribution to this volume. He arrives at the conclusion that Athens was a stateless society. However, I am of the opinion that this conclusion is wrong: and I believe that Athens and Rome were (...) early states. Therefore the present article is in many respects a direct discussion with Berent (as well as with other supporters of this idea). (shrink)
The standard epistemic justification for inclusiveness in political decision making is the Condorcet Jury Theorem, which states that the probability of a correct decision using majority rule increases in group size (given certain assumptions). Informally, majority rule acts as a mechanism to pool the information contained in the judgements of individual agents. I aim to extend the explanation of how groups of political agents track the truth. Before agents can pool the information, they first need to find truth-conducive information. Increasing (...) group size is also important in the initial search for truth-conducive information. (shrink)
The burden of difference: pluralist justice and the public sphere -- Moral conversations and democratic hermeneutics -- Particularism versus universalism: a false debate? -- Secularism, culture, and critique -- Laïcité and the memory of public culture -- The ties that bind: public culture and the debt to the past -- Normative solidarity and public hermeneutics -- From intersubjectivity to encounter -- Exit of religion, debt of meaning.
In The March of Unreason, Dick Taverne expresses his concern that irrationality is on the rise in Western society, and argues that public opinion is increasingly dominated by unreflecting prejudice and an unwillingness to engage with factual evidence. Discussing topics such as genetically modified crops and foods, organic farming, the MMR vaccine, environmentalism, the precautionary principle, and the new anti-capitalist and anti-globalization movements, he argues that the rejection of the evidence-based approach nurtures a culture of suspicion, distrust, and cynicism, and (...) leads to dogmatic assertion and intolerance. Science, with all the benefits it brings, is an essential part of a civilized and democratic society: it offers the most hopeful future for humankind. (shrink)