Recent years have witnessed a burgeoning international literature which seeks to analyse the construction of health and health policy through an analytical lens drawn from post-Foucauldian ideas of governmentality. This book is the first to apply the theoretical lens of post-Foucauldian governmentality to an analysis of health problems, practices, and policy in Ireland. Drawing on empirical examples related to childhood, obesity, mental health, smoking, ageing and others, it explores how specific health issues have been constructed as problematic and in need of intervention in the Irish State. The book focuses specifically on how Jean Jacques Rousseau's critical social theory and normative political theory meet as a conception of childhood. The 'biosocial' apparatus has recently been reconfigured through a policy framework called Healthy Ireland, the purpose of which is to 'reduce health inequalities' by 'empowering people and communities'. Child fatness continues to be framed as a pervasive and urgent issue in Irish society. In a novel departure in Irish public health promotion, the Stop the Spread (STS) campaign, free measuring tapes were distributed throughout Ireland to encourage people to measure their waists. A number of key characteristics of neoliberal governmentality, including the shift towards a market-based model of health; the distribution of power across a range of agents and agencies; and the increasing individualisation of health are discussed. One of the defining features of the Irish health system is the Universal Health Insurance and the Disability Act 2005.
crucially on the ultimate order of
primary goods. It is essential to the moral justification of political power –
institutionalised and legitimated as political authority – and thus to the EU’s standing as a political project. Citizenship, it will be argued, is a project of political
The political philosophical concepts relevant to citizenship in the EU (including
the concept of citizenship itself) are all normative concepts. To prevent misunderstanding, let me clarify what normative
figure of the child, this was
assembled at the intersection of the biological and the social, the medical
and the moral, and to this day remains a way of acting through and upon
life with a view to governing the future.
This chapter begins by examining the writings of Jean Jacques Rousseau,
focusing specifically on how his critical social theory and his normativepoliticaltheory meet as a conception of childhood that would come into
sharper focus during the nineteenth century, largely through the efforts of
Constructing health problems
This book addresses the question of political legitimacy in the European Union from the much-neglected angle of political responsibility. It develops an original communitarian approach to legitimacy based on Alasdair MacIntyre's ethics of virtues and practices, that can be contrasted with prevalent liberal-egalitarian and neo-republican approaches. The book argues that a ‘responsibility deficit’, quite distinct from the often discussed ‘democratic deficit’, can be diagnosed in the EU. This is documented in chapters that provide in-depth analysis of accountability, transparency and the difficulties associated with identifying responsibility in European governance. Closing this gap requires going beyond institutional engineering. It calls for gradual convergence towards certain core social and political practices and for the flourishing of the virtues of political responsibility in Europe's nascent political community. Throughout the book, normative political theory is brought to bear on concrete dilemmas of institutional choice faced by the EU during the recent constitutional debates.
This chapter articulates the concept of recognition beyond its anthropocentric core. The prevailing conceptualization of recognition in International Relations (IR) relates to the collective endowment with a legal status as a legitimate participant on the world stage. This understanding draws on normative political theories of justice premised on a binary distinction between acts of acknowledgement (‘responsive model of recognition’) and acts of declaration (‘generative model of recognition’). Thus, the mutual collective recognition of and by states becomes the mechanism through which one’s participation in the international domain is validated. However, this conceptualization seems to offer little of value when it comes to IR’s recent strive to offer an inclusive account not just for the human, but also for the non-human interactions in global life. At stake is not simply the need to extend the concept of recognition beyond the agency of the state, but rather the requirement for its radical reframing ‘beyond-the-human’ into a non-anthropocentric notion. This chapter considers critically the potential for a more inclusive and encompassing understanding of recognition embedded in the reciprocity principle. The suggestion is that if the study of IR is to address meaningfully the challenges of climate change through the conceptualization of recognition, it will have to confront and reframe its anthropocentric premise.
Rainer Bauböck's “Democratic
Inclusion: A Pluralistic Theory of Citizenship” is characteristically
incisive. In this essay and elsewhere (e.g. Bauböck 2003, 2007 ), he has liberated normativepoliticaltheory from the
girdle of territorial boundary conditions. If ever it was, it is obviously no
longer possible to posit a world of perfectly segmented national communities.
For normative theory to remain
here, the aim is to assure them that there is a real
problem, or maybe set of problems, that liberals need to pay more attention to
than they hitherto have.
Before setting out, it would be useful to briefly discuss three aspects of
the way I understand and employ realist theory in this monograph, which
will hopefully explain in a little more detail what I take realism to be (or not
to be) as well as why my line of inquiry takes the particular form it does: the
relationship between realism and normativepoliticaltheory, realism and the
ideal/non-ideal theory debate
understood or examined in a republican light. This, essentially, is
what we aim to do in this book.
In attempting this, we make two important assumptions: first, that the
Constitution – understood in its broad sense – can be read and interpreted,
at least to some extent, from the standpoint of normativepoliticaltheory, and
second, that republicanism offers a fruitful theoretical perspective in the Irish context. We make no strong claim that the Constitution is essentially a ‘republican’
one or otherwise. We aim to use republican ideas as a basis for understanding
are different and correspond to its specific historical experience.
One of the concluding ACCEPT reports noted also that there is often
a gulf between current sociological analysis of diversity in specific contexts – from which the analysis of normative values and principles are
often absent – and normativepoliticaltheory, which has often tended
to overlook specific sociological realities and political debates. The
authors suggested that these should be brought together: ‘it is necessary
to consider normative modalities of acceptance or non
however, is it advancing into the field of International Relations
(see Hutchings 2008 ; Porter 2007 ; Robinson 1999,
The contemporary theory of ‘recognition’ also,
notably, grew up in response to dominant normativepoliticaltheories. But this time it was not rationalist universalist moral
theory as such, but the widespread Western consensus on theorizing about