Symposium 11 (1):33-51 (2007)

Democracy may indeed be an imperfect form of government, but all the others are far worse and this, surely, is a moment for recognizing the benefits which democracy brings, not a moment for drawing attention to its shortcomings. It is a moment for confirming our faith, not a moment for doubting it.” Published over ten years ago, Susan Mendus’ statement could stand as a mantra for our times with democracy diagnosed as being at risk almost as a matter of course in our public domains over the last years. That is, despite its much touted benefits, the assumptions, concepts, and practices of democracy are currently depicted as being under threat from an array of terrorists, dictators, fundamentalists of various stripes, and even from the West’s own instituted reactions to the events of the past few years. On this basis at least it would seem that democracy has not lived up to its promise of being the “solution that other people will necessarily adopt when they cease to be ‘irrational.’” Given these points, perhaps it is advisable to follow Mendus’ advice and stop any examination of democracy that would further expose its frailties and shortcomings and simply affirm our faith in it. Of course, this is not what Mendus herself does. The above words are, after all, to be found at the beginning of an essay that goes on to consider yet another critique of democracy, that comprising the feminist challenge to the historical exclusion of women from democracy
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Continental Philosophy
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s) 1917-9685
DOI 10.5840/symposium20071114
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 65,714
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Derrida, Politics and Democracy to Come.Paul Patton - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (6):766-780.
The Civic Religion of Social Hope: A Reply to Simon Critchley.Mark Dooley - 2001 - Philosophy and Social Criticism 27 (5):35-58.
Derrida: The Reader.Simon Critchley - 2006 - Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy 10 (2):315-326.
Rorty and Contemporary Social Theory.Srđan Prodanović - 2010 - Filozofija I Društvo 21 (2):97-116.
Thinking, Without Wonder.Rodolphe Gasché - 2006 - Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy 10 (2):327-340.


Added to PP index

Total views
76 ( #145,274 of 2,462,657 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #179,038 of 2,462,657 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes