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Abstract only
Allyn Fives

generally agreed is that the obligation to obey the law is one of our political obligations, that we do have such an obligation in the first instance, and yet, under certain circumstances, we may be justified in breaking the law in the name of any one of a number of competing moral claims (Walzer 1970 , p. 16; cf. Smith 1973 ). What remains unresolved is when, precisely, such conflicts arise and how, exactly, they are to be resolved. And it is particularly illuminating to analyse Shklar's work on political obligation because, as we know, at different points in her

in Judith Shklar and the liberalism of fear
Abstract only
Allyn Fives

Shklar's liberalism of fear is, as we have seen, an approach to political thought that ranks the vices in a particular way. She is, of course, in various ways a sceptic as well. Nonetheless, my thesis here is that her putting cruelty first among the vices in this way is evidence of a not insignificant degree of epistemological ambition. Although she is offering a sceptical alternative to political moralism, in one important respect Shklar's work is not all that different from that of its most representative figures, including Rawls and Mill

in Judith Shklar and the liberalism of fear
Abstract only
Allyn Fives

, oppressive, and cruel (Shklar 1957 , p. 97; 1964a , p. 169; 1989a , p. 30; 1993a , p. 183). However, in her early work she maintains that we owe obligations of justice even in such circumstances, and we can be faced with moral conflicts precisely in relation to these demands. In contrast, by the time of her mature work, in the 1980s and 1990s, she concludes that tyranny cancels obligations of justice. There are a number of distinct strands of argumentation evident in Shklar's mature position on tyranny. As we saw in the last chapter, she maintains

in Judith Shklar and the liberalism of fear
Paul K. Jones

fascism, Laclau actively avoided including such a dimension in his theorizations of populism. The more recent advocacy of ‘a left populism’ by Chantal Mouffe is vulnerable to the same criticism. 1 The Institute's work provides an analysis of modern demagogy that speaks to this absence while the Gramscian tradition offers the prospect of a theoretical elaboration of the contingency of populist movements and their potential demagogic capture. In short, both speak to this book's focus

in Critical theory and demagogic populism
Poulantzas, Laclau, Hall
Paul K. Jones

This chapter examines what I will call ‘the Gramscian tradition’. The work of Ernesto Laclau and Stuart Hall are the best known self-styled Gramscians in non-orthodox populism studies and their work on populism constitutes a kind of ‘de facto’ critical theory of populism. Laclau's more elaborated theory of populism was long ignored in orthodox populism studies but has recently begun to inform it. 1 Hall's conception of ‘authoritarian populism’ represents only a brief component of his work but

in Critical theory and demagogic populism
Author: Allyn Fives

What does the work of Judith Shklar reveal to us about the proper role and limits of political theory? In particular, what are the implications of her arguments both for the way in which we should think of freedom and for the approach we should take to the resolution of moral conflicts? There is growing interest in Shklar’s arguments, in particular the so-called liberalism of fear, characteristic of her mature work. She has become an important influence for those taking a sceptical approach to political thought and also for those concerned first and foremost with the avoidance of great evils. However, this book shows that the most important factor shaping her mature work is not her scepticism but, rather, a value monist approach to both moral conflict and freedom, and that this represents a radical departure from the value pluralism (and scepticism) of her early work. This book also advances a clear line of argument in defence of value pluralism in political theory, one that builds on but moves beyond Shklar’s own early work.

Abstract only
Thomas Osborne

his life he signed his work with the surname Rottweiler. This seems an appropriate indicator of the stringent, even fearsome tone of some of his writings. English-speaking readers can usefully start on Adorno by consulting the essays translated in a volume, edited by J.M. Bernstein, entitled The Culture Industry . 1 These are for the most part recognisably ‘sociological’ pieces. But then go and read Adorno’s essays on the philosophers Hegel and Husserl, the baroque Minima Moralia or his writings on music. Here we have, obviously enough, Adorno the philosopher

in The structure of modern cultural theory
Open Access (free)
The beginning of aesthetic theory and the end of art
Andrew Bowie

5 Hegel: the beginning of aesthetic theory and the end of art Which Hegel? Hegel’s work has come in recent years to exemplify many of the choices facing contemporary philosophy. The changed status of Hegel can, though, seem rather odd, given the labyrinthine nature of his texts, the huge divergences between his interpreters from his own time until today, and the fact that some of the philosophers who now invoke him come from an analytical tradition noted for its insistence on a clarity not always encountered in Hegel himself. Even contemporary interpreters range

in Aesthetics and subjectivity
Author: Thomas Osborne

This book is concerned with the scope of cultural theory in its modern, it might even be said in its modernist, form. The three thinkers under most consideration in the book are Theodor Adorno, Michel Foucault and Pierre Bourdieu, who might hardly be seen as representatives of cultural theory per se if that enterprise is taken to be what it should often taken to be. The book starts with Adorno (1903-1969) not just because his work is an apt way to introduce further some very basic themes of the book: in particular those of critical autonomy and educationality. Adorno's reflections on art and culture are contributions to the ethical understanding of autonomy, emphasising the importance of the cultivation of critical reflection. The argument here is that he is, rather, an ethico-critical theorist of democracy and a philosopher of hope. The book then situates the work of Michel Foucault (1926-1984), in other ways so different from Adorno, in terms of a broadly, if minimally, parallel agenda in modern cultural theory. It outlines some of the importance of Foucault's notion of an 'aesthetics of existence' in relation to his work as a whole. It further invokes related themes in the work of Pierre Bourdieu (1930-2002). Finally, it moves things in a different direction, towards postmodernism, invoking the increasing role of the cultural and aesthetic dimension in contemporary experience that is often taken as a central aspect of the postmodern turn.

Rainer Forst in dialogue
Series: Critical Powers
Author: Rainer Forst

Rainer Forst's Toleration in Conflict (published in English 2013) is the most important historical and philosophical analysis of toleration of the past several decades. Reconstructing the entire history of the concept, it provides a forceful account of the tensions and dilemmas that pervade the discourse of toleration. In his lead essay for this volume, Forst revisits his work on toleration and situates it in relation to both the concept of political liberty and his wider project of a critical theory of justification. Interlocutors Teresa M. Bejan, Chandran Kukathas, John Horton, Daniel Weinstock, Melissa S. Williams, Patchen Markell and David Owen then critically examine Forst's reconstruction of toleration, his account of political liberty and the form of critical theory that he articulates in his work on such political concepts. The volume concludes with Forst’s reply to his critics.