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Political theory, from antiquity to the present, has been divided over the relationship between the requirements of justice and the limitations of persons and institutions to meet those requirements. Some theorists hold that a theory of justice should be utopian or idealistic-that the derivation of the correct principles of justice should not take into account human and institutional limitations. Others insist on a realist or non-utopian view, according to which feasibility-facts about what is possible given human and institutional limitations-is a constraint on principles of justice. In recent years, the relationship between the ideal and the real has become the subject of renewed scholarly interest. This anthology aims to represent the contemporary state of this classic debate. By and large, contributors to the volume deny that the choice between realism and idealism is binary. Rather, there is a continuum between realism and idealism that locates these extremes of each view at opposite poles. The contributors, therefore, tend to occupy middle positions, only leaning in the ideal or non-ideal direction. Together, their contributions not only represent a wide array of attractive positions in the new literature on the topic, but also collectively advance how we understand the difference between idealism and realism itself.
"We can no longer assume that liberal democracy is the wave of the future... This splendid book is an invaluable contribution to the debate about what ails democracy, and what can be done about it." -Michael J. Sandel, author of Justice "Everyone worried about the state of contemporary politics should read this book." -Anne-Marie Slaughter, President of the New America Foundation The world is in turmoil. From Russia, Turkey, and Egypt to the United States, authoritarian populists have seized power. As a result, democracy itself may now be at risk. Two core components of liberal democracy-individual rights and the popular will-are increasingly at war with each other. As the role of money in politics soared and important issues were taken out of public contestation, a system of "rights without democracy" took hold. Populists who rail against this say they want to return power to the people. But in practice they create something just as bad: a system of "democracy without rights." The consequence, as Yascha Mounk shows in this brilliant and timely book, is that trust in politics is dwindling. Citizens are falling out of love with their political system. Democracy is wilting away. Drawing on vivid stories and original research, Mounk identifies three key drivers of voters' discontent: stagnating living standards, fear of multiethnic democracy, and the rise of social media. To reverse the trend, politicians need to enact radical reforms that benefit the many, not the few. The People vs. Democracy is the first book to describe both how we got here and what we need to do now. For those unwilling to give up either individual rights or the concept of the popular will, Mounk argues that urgent action is needed, as this may be our last chance to save democracy.
We have entered the gateway to the apocalypse. This theological concept is the best metaphor to describe the world in which we are already living. Chaos is all around us: political folly, economical delirium, ecological catastrophe, intellectual cynicism, technological simulation of life. This is what Franco 'Bifo' Berardi suggests in this wry, dark, disconcerting but also brilliant and invigorating journey through the main events that we have witnessed in recent years. One century after the Communist revolution, the very idea that the world could be changed for the better seems dead once and for all. Every time that a new change occurs nowadays, it seems to be a change for the worse. But the fact that nothing can save us any more shouldn't be seen as a form of fatality or a reason for surrender. On the contrary, if our world is dead, then the space is open for another to appear - a world where apocalypse can shake us out of our zombie-like contemporary existence. The second coming of Communism will have nothing to do with 1917. Apocalypse has to be conceived of as a metaphor, and Communism is a metaphor too: the metaphor of the possible deployment of the potentials of the mind.
Violence - from state coercion to wars and revolutions - remains an enduring global reality. But whereas it is often believed that the point of constitutional politics is to make violence unnecessary, others argue that it is an unavoidable element of politics. In this lucid and erudite book, Elizabeth Frazer and Kimberly Hutchings address these issues using vivid contemporary and historic examples. They carefully explore the strategies that have been deployed to condone violence, either as means to certain ends or as an inherent facet of politics. Examining the complex questions raised by different types of violence, they conclude that, ultimately, all attempts to justify political violence fail. This book will be essential introductory reading for students and scholars of the ethics and politics of political violence.
In an era of accelerating technology and increasing complexity, how should we reimagine the emancipatory potential of feminism? How should gender politics be reconfigured in a world being transformed by automation, globalization and the digital revolution? These questions are addressed in this bold new book by Helen Hester, a founding member of the 'Laboria Cuboniks' collective that developed the acclaimed manifesto 'Xenofeminism: A Politics for Alienation'. Hester develops a three-part definition of xenofeminism grounded in the ideas of technomaterialism, anti-naturalism, and gender abolitionism. She elaborates these ideas in relation to assistive reproductive technologies and interrogates the relationship between reproduction and futurity, while steering clear of a problematic anti-natalism. Finally, she examines what xenofeminist technologies might look like in practice, using the history of one specific device to argue for a future-oriented gender politics that can facilitate alternative models of reproduction. Challenging and iconoclastic, this visionary book is the essential guide to one of the most exciting intellectual trends in contemporary feminism.
Who ought to do what, and for whom, if global justice is to progress? In this collection of essays on justice beyond borders, Onora O'Neill criticises theoretical approaches that concentrate on rights, yet ignore both the obligations that must be met to realise those rights, and the capacities needed by those who shoulder these obligations. She notes that states are profoundly anti-cosmopolitan institutions, and that even those committed to justice and universal rights often lack the competence and the will to secure them, let alone to secure them beyond their borders. She argues for a wider conception of global justice, in which obligations may be held either by states or by competent non-state actors, and in which borders themselves must meet standards of justice. This rich and wide-ranging collection will appeal to a broad array of academic researchers and advanced students of political philosophy, political theory, international relations and philosophy of law.
In recent years, feminist and queer theory have effectively disavowed both "the human" and revolutionary politics. In the face of massive geopolitical crisis, posthumanists have called for us to reconsider fundamentally the superiority and centrality of mankind and "the human," and question how Man can presume to change the world by revolutionary action, particularly when Marx's dreams seem to have been swept into the dustbin of history. This provocative book reaffirms what is most basic in feminism - the attack on the "universality" and sovereignty of Man - but contends that the only way this can mean anything other than pessimistic rhetoric is to embrace human agency and the struggle against colonialism and capitalism. In a series of "creolized" readings - Foucault with Ali Shari'ati, Lacan with Fanon, and Spinoza with Sylvia Wynter - the authors demonstrate what is at stake in the ongoing debate between humanism and posthumanism, putting this debate in the context of contemporary global crises and the possibilities of revolution. In its defense of "political spirituality," this book pushes for a new trajectory in response to the gross inequalities of today, one that offers us a very different view of revolution and its present-day potential.
The election of an unabashedly patriarchal man as US President was a shock for many--despite decades of activism on gender inequalities and equal rights, how could it come to this? What is it about patriarchy that seems to make it so resilient and resistant to change? Undoubtedly it endures in part because some people benefit from the unequal advantages it confers. But is that enough to explain its stubborn persistence? In this highly original and persuasively argued book, Carol Gilligan and Naomi Snider put forward a different view: they argue that patriarchy persists because it serves a psychological function. By requiring us to sacrifice love for the sake of hierarchy, patriarchy protects us from the vulnerability of loving and becomes a defense against loss. Uncovering the powerful psychological mechanisms that underpin patriarchy, the authors show how forces beyond our awareness may be driving a politics that otherwise seems inexplicable.
This is a new student edition of Erasmus' crucial treatise on political theory and also contains a new, excerpted translation from his Panegyric. The Education of a Christian Prince is one of the most important "advice-to-princes" texts published in the Renaissance and was dedicated to Charles V. It is a strongly pacifist work in which Erasmus sought to ensure that the prince governed justly and benevolently. This edition also includes an original introduction, a chronology of the life and work of Erasmus, and a comprehensive guide to further reading.
The present ecological mutation has organized the whole political landscape for the last thirty years. This could explain the deadly cocktail of exploding inequalities, massive deregulation, and conversion of the dream of globalization into a nightmare for most people. What holds these three phenomena together is the conviction, shared by some powerful people, that the ecological threat is real and that the only way for them to survive is to abandon any pretense at sharing a common future with the rest of the world. Hence their flight offshore and their massive investment in climate change denial. The Left has been slow to turn its attention to this new situation. It is still organized along an axis that goes from investment in local values to the hope of globalization and just at the time when, everywhere, people dissatisfied with the ideal of modernity are turning back to the protection of national or even ethnic borders. This is why it is urgent to shift sideways and to define politics as what leads toward the Earth and not toward the global or the national. Belonging to a territory is the phenomenon most in need of rethinking and careful redescription; learning new ways to inhabit the Earth is our biggest challenge. Bringing us down to earth is the task of politics today.
The use of referendums around the world has grown remarkably in the past thirty years and, in particular, referendums are today deployed more than ever in the settlement of constitutional questions, even in countries with little or no tradition of direct democracy. This is the first book by a constitutional theorist to address the implications of this development for constitutional democracy in a globalizing age, when many of the older certainties surrounding sovereignty and constitutional authority are coming under scrutiny. The book identifies four substantive constitutional processes where the referendum is regularly used today: the founding of new states; the creation or amendment of constitutions; the establishment of complex new models of sub-state autonomy, particularly in multinational states; and the transfer of sovereign powers from European states to the European Union. The book, as a study in constitutional theory, addresses the challenges this phenomenon poses not only for particular constitutional orders, which are typically structured around a representative model of democracy, but for constitutional theory more broadly. The main theoretical focus of the book is the relationship between the referendum and democracy. It addresses the standard criticisms which the referendum is subjected to by democratic theorists and deploys both civic republican theory and the recent turn in deliberative democracy to ask whether by good process-design the constitutional referendum is capable of facilitating the engagement of citizens in deliberative acts of constitution-making. With the referendum firmly established as a fixture of contemporary constitutionalism, the book addresses the key question for constitutional theorists and practitioners of how might its operation be made more democratic in age of constitutional transformation.
What do we know about war crimes and justice? What are the discursive practices through which the dominant images of war crimes, atrocity and justice are understood? In this wide ranging text, Michael J. Shapiro contrasts the justice-related imagery of the war crimes trial (for example the solitary, headphone-wearing defendant at the Hague listening with intent to a catalogue of charges) with ?literary justice?: representations in literature, film, and biographical testimony, raising questions about atrocities and justice that juridical proceedings exclude. By engaging with the ambiguities exposed by the artistic and experiential genres, reading them alongside policy and archival documentation and critical theoretical discourses, Shapiro?s War Crimes, Atrocity, and Justice challenges traditional notions of ?responsibility? in juridical settings. His comparative readings instead encourage a focus on the conditions of possibility for war crimes as they arise from the actions of states, non-state agencies and individuals involved in arms trading, peace keeping, sex trafficking, and law enforcement and adjudication. Theory springs to life as Shapiro draws on examples from legal discourse, literature, media, film, and television, to build a nuanced picture of politics and the problem of justice. It will be of great interest to students of film and media, literature, cultural studies, contemporary philosophy and political science
At the centre of John Rawls's political philosophy is one of the most influential thought experiments of the twentieth century: which principles of justice would a group of individuals choose to regulate their society if they were deprived of any information about themselves that might bias their choice? In this collection of new essays, leading political philosophers examine the ramifications and continued relevance of Rawls's idea. Their chapters explore topics including the place of the original position in rational choice theory, the similarities between Rawls's original position and Kant's categorical imperative, the differences between Rawls's model and Scanlon's contractualism, and the role of the original position in the argument between Rawls and other views in political philosophy, including utilitarianism, feminism, and radicalism. This accessible volume will be a valuable resource for undergraduates, as well as advanced students and scholars of philosophy, game theory, economics, and the social and political sciences.
On Anarchism is an essential introduction to the Noam Chomsky's political theory. On Anarchism sheds a much needed light on the foundations of Chomsky's thought, specifically his constant questioning of the legitimacy of entrenched power. The book gathers his essays and interviews to provide a short, accessible introduction to his distinctively optimistic brand of anarchism. Refuting the notion of anarchism as a fixed idea, and disputing the traditional fault lines between anarchism and socialism, this is a book sure to challenge, provoke and inspire. Profoundly relevant to our times, it is a touchstone for political activists and anyone interested in deepening their understanding of anarchism, or of Chomsky's thought. 'Arguably the most important intellectual alive' New York Times Noam Chomsky is the author of numerous bestselling and influential political books, including Hegemony or Survival, Failed States, Interventions, What We Say Goes, Hopes and Prospects, Gaza in Crisis, Making the Future and Occupy. Nathan Schneider is the author of Thank You, Anarchy: Notes from the Occupy Apocalypse and God in Proof: The Story of a Search from the Ancients to the Internet.
An interview with author J. Sakai about his groundbreaking work Settlers: Mythology of the White Proletariat, accompanied by Kuwasi Balagoon's essay "The Continuing Appeal of Imperialism."
Debating Immigration presents twenty-one original and updated essays, written by some of the world's leading experts and pre-eminent scholars that explore the nuances of contemporary immigration in the United States and Europe. This volume is organized around the following themes: economics, demographics and race, law and policy, philosophy and religion, and European politics. Its topics include comprehensive immigration reform, the limits of executive power, illegal immigration, human smuggling, civil rights and employment discrimination, economic growth and unemployment, and social justice and religion. A timely second edition, Debating Immigration is an effort to bring together divergent voices to discuss various aspects of immigration often neglected or buried in discussions.
Territory continues to be an essential part of modern political discussion, evidenced in the recent decentralization of state structures and rise of sub-state nationalist and regionalist parties. With extensive empirical evidence alongside contemporary theory, this multidisciplinary Handbook makes the case for an outright rejection of state-centric views on territorial politics. Original research by political scientists, geographers, sociologists, lawyers, historians and public policy specialists demonstrates how territory continues to have an impact across institutional and political structures, as well as on culture, identity and citizenship. Over four sections, contributions cover institutions and ideas; elections and political parties; public policy concerns; and geographical perspectives, including conflict resolution and gendered approaches to territorial politics. With perspectives from European, North American, Sub-Saharan African, South Asian and Australasian case studies, Klaus Detterbeck and Eve Hepburn provide a state-of-the-art international Handbook of Territorial Politics. Incorporating public policy, comparative politics, multilevel governance and political geography, this Handbook provides scholars and students with a compelling collection on territorial politics that will prove invaluable.
Recent years have seen a number of whistleblowers risk their liberty to expose illegal and corrupt behaviour. Some have heralded their bravery; others see them as traitors. Can there be a moral duty to emulate their example and blow the whistle? In this book, leading political philosophers Emanuela Ceva and Michele Bocchiola draw on well-known cases, such as those of Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning, to probe the difference between permissible and dutiful whistleblowing. They argue that, insofar as whistleblowing is understood as an individual act of dissent, it falls short of constituting a duty, although it can be praiseworthy. Whistleblowing should, they contend, be seen as an institutional duty, embedded within the organizational practices of public accountability. This concise book will be invaluable for students and scholars of applied political theory, and political and professional ethics.
John Rawls aims to express an essential part of the common core of the democratic tradition-justice as fairness-and to provide an alternative to utilitarianism, which had dominated the Anglo-Saxon tradition of political thought since the nineteenth century. Rawls substitutes the ideal of the social contract as a more satisfactory account of the basic rights and liberties of citizens as free and equal persons. "Each person," writes Rawls, "possesses an inviolability founded on justice that even the welfare of society as a whole cannot override." Advancing the ideas of Rousseau, Kant, Emerson, and Lincoln, Rawls's theory is as powerful today as it was when first published. Though the revised edition of A Theory of Justice, published in 1999, is the definitive statement of Rawls's view, much of the extensive literature on his theory refers to the original. This first edition is available for scholars and serious students of Rawls's work.
With a foreword by Isabel Hardman HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED...how people feel about sleeping with the political enemy? ...whether gambling markets are best at predicting political outcomes? ...who Santa Claus would vote for? Then look no further. More Sex, Lies and the Ballot Box brings us another collection of concise chapters penned by leading political experts and delving into the fascinating field of electoral politics. Following on from the success of its bestselling predecessor, this illuminating book shines a light on how we vote in Britain and around the world. You'll learn about the shifting landscape of party politics and the perceptions and misconceptions that shape our opinions of our politicians and of each other. You'll learn about the factors informing voter habits - from class, race and gender to the internet and the weather. You'll also learn which political party has the most sexually satisfied supporters. Forget mind-numbing numbers and difficult demographics. This sharp and frequently hilarious volume is fizzing with accessible facts and figures that are more than just conversation starters - they're unexpected insights into the human condition.
Politics is the process by which communities collectively decide to pursue certain courses of action. It is, as such, always a matter of judgment. Courses of action are chosen at least in part because they are somehow adjudged better than the alternatives, and this has given rise to a great deal of speculation about the ways in which we determine the relative merits of proposed laws and policies. What exactly is good judgment in politics? What are the characteristics of people who judge especially well? How is good judgment acquired and how can we recognize it in others? Peter Steinberger addresses such questions by considering a variety of important developments in the history of political thought - ancient, modern and contemporary - introducing readers to important and on-going debates about the idea of prudence or practical wisdom as it functions, or should function, in the realm of public affairs. It will be essential reading for students and scholars of political theory, the history of political thought, and political ethics.
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