Chantal Mouffe: Citizenship, Democracy and Pluralism – 1 October 2010

Chantal Mouffe: Citizenship, Democracy and Pluralism - 1 October 2010
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now why are we here tonight we're here to talk about the nature of democratic politics and according to Chantal move how to engage the fact that democracy in fact is about conflict more than it is about rational deliberation or about consensus now professor move is coming to the Netherlands at a fascinating moment just as it looks like we're about to get a new minority government that will be supported by and in turn will thereby support a political party that is anti-islam anti-immigrant and anti system it used to be that Holland had boring politics in which questions of management and organization seemed to be more important than questions of intensely conflicting interest how did this happen if you go back a hundred years the Dutch form of politics and government is a system that had its origin and a desire to pacify social conflicts that could become violent especially conflict based on differences of religion and politics while at the same time ensuring for all different groups shuttle move please well good evening well I must say that if I had known in advance what was going to be the situation in Holland at the moment in which I was going to live my speaker might have prepared up something a bit different but we realized time during the discussion to raise all those issue because when I was invited by the parish mellitus and and they told me the kind of thing they were interested in in doing I mean we were not really mentioning that aspect of populism but most question of citizenship they insisted on the idea of Constitution so I'm not I could have done something much more orientated to our populace but but that was not how we had planned the presentation but as I say I think that I'm going to say is it's relevant for further of our question and we will have fun during the discussion so what I'll do in this presentation is to present my agonistic model of democracy and examine its consequences for envisioning the nature of citizenship and the type of pluralism suited to a liberal democratic society to acknowledge the existence of relation of power and the need to transfer them while renouncing the illusion that we could free herself completely from power this is what is specific to the understanding of democracy which I have opposed to call agonistic localism such a perspective recognized as the specificity of plural is democracy does not reside in the absence of domination and violence but in the establishment of a set of institution through which those form of a power of n domination and violence can be limited and contested I want not to come to agnes pluralism and say little bit about what I understand by that bringing to the fore the paradoxical nature of liberal democracy leads us to acknowledge that with the locus of what I call an agonistic confrontation an unending struggle about the Nagle renegotiation of the tension which exists between is too conservative logic this is as we will see something that has important consequences for envisaging citizenship but in order to understand what is at stake in this confrontation I need to introduce a set of distinction what IIIi have proposed in my world problems and distinction between their political and politics distinction between antagonism and agonism between enemy and adversary which play an important role in my proposal to visualize the rural democracy in term of agonistic pluralism another disputed issue concerned the whole that religion should be allowed to play in a liberal democratic regime of course one of the central tenets of such a regime is the separation between church and state but of course that doesn't mean that this separation is fully realized in the devil existing liberal democracies but that's another issue but such a separation makes possible a regime of toleration where the state tolerate the multiplicity of religious group and forces the groups to tolerate one another contrary to some liberal views I do not believe that this regime of torture founded on the basis of the supposedly neutral character of the liberal set of code you know I've already met critique of this idea of the neutrality of the state to be sure in order to respect in the liver of the anti rallies a liberal democratic state versus I have said be agnostic in matter of religion and morality but as I've also indicated it cannot be agnostic concerning political values since by definition it postulates some ethical biblical values because those are the values which constitute this principle of legitimacy validation should therefore be justified on the ground that it is required by the value positive of the Liberal Democratic regime and the form of coexistence that they inform we need to reject the identification of democratization with westernization and accept the legitimate authority of form of democracy this means to acknowledge that the world is a prove averse not a universe and I think this is the condition to envisage the development of you know what I've referred to a multipolar world where no regional pole could pretend to F a privileged position nothing this is something which is really very important in you know prison sentences to accept the exception of multiple over should also and accept different models if there's a multipolar world where the only legitimate model of the American Western liberal wonders that will not be a beautiful world conflict will of causing among those different regional poles but my claim is that they are less likely to take an antagonist an antagonistic form done in a world with some factors attempt to impose their model as being the only legitimate one thank you I may have simplified her analysis of Schmidt but in my view she mess reads him by supposing that the political is a policy of the people in my view Smith is not interested in the people at all like a higa higa billion or maybe the ardent follower of the totally reinstate to totalitarian state of Hitler he would later become for him the state is the higher identity identity entity that should be identified with the political on the political she is less ambiguous the pluralistic loyalists liberal democracy society and democracy does not deny the existence of conflicts but provides the institution's allowing them to be expressed in adversely adversarial form and further she says adversary's do fight even fiercely according to a shared set of rules but the defense of those rules and institutions should be understood in terms of politics not on the basis of moral equality of the friendly enemies to understand what rules and institutions she allows in the agonistic model I would like to confront you the film titled us and done by the polis video artist is me s key I've seen a couple of years ago thank you i what i feel very interesting here is i'm not quite sure how much is a dialogue and how much this is a statement of positions I see this I see certain movements towards Iowa this is this is this is this is very ivanishin we know we have a very different position and i don't think you know we could have ever agree so but it's definitely yeah it's not only thing I consider of that as opinion that's you know I I disagree with but that I apparently accident and I gonna state confrontation

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