By Wesley C. Swedlow
Against the Personification of Democracy deals a brand new concept of political subjectivity that places the hindrance of hope into the leading edge. through the use of Lacan to learn key figures in political philosophy, the ebook demonstrates why democratic conception -- consultant or radical - isn't just useless by way of the simplest type of political cohabitation, but in addition effective of harmful and self-defeating forces.
The e-book starts with the talk among Hobbesian and Lockeian notions of subjectivity to argue that the character of political subjectivity is a functionality of the matter of wish. It then considers the query of the correct constitution of political cohabitation in gentle of Hannah Arendt's insights into what occurred to the stateless in global conflict II, resulting in a contrast among the individual in a naked and unadorned shape and the general public character that's represented in such a lot sorts of democracy.
Lacan is used to reread the query of political subjectivity, yet, in contrast to radical democratic conception, the ebook argues opposed to agonistic, consultant, and hence unending democracy. this kind of political formation is noticeable as an instigation and supreme unhappiness to wish (the persona), which results in basic damaging results, together with genocide, focus camps, and the removing of rights. Arguing opposed to Zizek's thought radical Act can store us politically, the publication proposes a common political formation because the simply approach out of the problem of political wish. This formation isn't really depending on public personas, yet rooted in genuine folks assembly of their locality and sovereign to nobody.
An quintessential textual content for somebody drawn to political idea, political philosophy, and democratic idea, opposed to the Personification of Democracy evaluations optimistic theories of sovereignty via its research of political subjectivity and the matter of hope. extra importantly, it presents a really common idea of democratic cohabitation that escapes political hope and therefore the scapegoats of democratic failure, let alone the nervousness of the impossibility of the democratic promise.
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Additional resources for Against the personification of democracy : a Lacanian critique of political subjectivity
5 Rational choice and game theorists, who seek different aims given that they are political scientists, are nonetheless quite fond of Hobbes. ” See Contemporary Empirical Political Theory, ed. Kristen Renwick Monroe (Berkeley, California: University of California Press, 1997): 203. One of the main reasons that rational choice and game theorists turn to Hobbes is the fact that his version of the state of nature seems to outline the prisoner’s dilemma. See, for instance, Pasquale Pasquino, “Hobbes, Religion, and Rational Choice Theory: Hobbes’s Two Leviathans and the Fool,” Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, 82 (2001): 406–19.
One of the main reasons that rational choice and game theorists turn to Hobbes is the fact that his version of the state of nature seems to outline the prisoner’s dilemma. See, for instance, Pasquale Pasquino, “Hobbes, Religion, and Rational Choice Theory: Hobbes’s Two Leviathans and the Fool,” Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, 82 (2001): 406–19. However, at one point Pasquino notes that “an element of irrationality in human behavior” is probably at the root of civil war (411). It is precisely the philosophical ramifications of 44 AGAINST THE PERSONIFICATION OF DEMOCRACY this irrationality for subjectivity, and not rational choice, that interests me here insofar as I believe Hobbes saw it as the prime reason the sovereign needed an ideological answer to our ever present natural anxiety.
Desire and Ideology 45 Michael J. Sandel, Democracy’s Discontent: America in Search of a Public Philosophy (Cambridge: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1996): 4. 15 John Locke, Two Treatises of Government (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988): paragraph 4, hereafter referred to as Second Treatise followed by paragraph number. 16 It should be noted that rational action, or choice, theory is a part of political science, and therefore in many ways conceives of humans as homo oeconomicus, thereby foregoing in many ways questions of rationality.