Aversive Democracy: Inheritance and Originality in the by Aletta J. Norval

By Aletta J. Norval

The twenty-first century has introduced a renewed curiosity in democratic concept and practices, making a advanced courting among time-honoured democratic traditions and new types of political participation. Reflecting in this interaction among culture and innovation, Aletta J. Norval deals clean insights into the worldwide complexities of the formation of democratic subjectivity, the tough emergence and articulation of political claims, the structure of democratic family members among electorate and the deepening of our democratic mind's eye. Aversive Democracy attracts notion from a severe engagement with deliberative and post-structuralist versions of democracy, when supplying a particular studying encouraged by means of modern paintings at the later Wittgenstein. it is a artistic and insightful paintings which reorients democratic thought, elucidating the nature of the commitments we interact in after we perform democratic lifestyles jointly.

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9 I use the term ‘disagreement’ here to indicate a plethora of phenomena – including dissensus, conflict and antagonism – conceptualized in very different ways within the post-structuralist tradition. For Laclau it consists in the thesis of the ‘impossibility of society’; for Žižek in the thesis of the lack in the subject; for Lefort, in the non-closure of the gap between being and discourse, and for Mouffe in the centrality of the political understood in 39 40 aversi ve democrac y For instance, for Lefort a forgetting of the primary division upon which it is instituted marks the formation of the modern state.

Secondly, while deliberative conceptions of democracy proceed from a model of unconstrained dialogue, devoid of power and of ‘distortions’, poststructuralists argue that power relations are intrinsic to their account of democracy. Finally, in contrast to the Habermasian project, poststructuralists make no attempt to specify normative preconditions and foundations for democratic discourse. Whereas deliberative democratic politics, in its strong procedural form as defended by Habermas, immunizes politics against the forces of cultural and ethical life,69 theorists of agonistic and antagonistic politics emphasize the need to contest such ethical and cultural questions.

73 In modern democratic societies, this primary division is not simply effaced, but is marked in a specific manner. Lefort holds that democracy is instituted and sustained by the dissolution of the markers of certainty. 74 While the work of ideology is to cover over this dissolution and to attempt to re-establish certainty, it ultimately is doomed to failure given the constitutive character of social division. Nevertheless, in the case of a democratic regime, the dissolution of the ‘markers of 72 73 74 the Schmittian sense.

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