Against Old Europe: Critical Theory and Alter-Globalization by Raphael Schlembach

By Raphael Schlembach

Within the wake of the Iraq battle, the time period previous Europe was once appropriated through politicians, civil society and social move actors alike to rally in defence of supposedly social and civilized values opposed to the perceived predatory forces of yankee finance.Against previous Europe sheds mild at the social circulate politics encapsulated within the protest slogan 'Fight outdated Europe'. inside of what's largely labelled the worldwide justice circulate, it explores a specific, radical point of view that warns opposed to the id with eu values through events resisting neoliberalism. Exploring the paintings of key theorists severe of globalization, together with Habermas, Negri, Holloway, Postone and de Benoist, the publication examines serious conception techniques to alter-globalization, illustrated with concrete examples of hobbies inside of modern Europe. In so doing, it invitations readers to discover the costs of nationalism, anti-Americanism and antisemitism introduced opposed to elements of the alter-globalization movement.Providing a brand new viewpoint on reviews of globalization, opposed to outdated Europe will entice sociologists and social and political theorists learning social activities, anti-globalization activism and ecu politics and identification.

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Civil society and social movement here take a leading role. What is more, this objective potential to resist the colonization of the lifeworld is also present politically in Old Europe. Habermas here draws parallels between this political-cultural space and forms of resistance against commodification and marketization. Moishe Postone’s engagement with Frankfurt School critical theory has led him into a very different direction. Like Habermas, Postone rejects a standpoint that would see labour or the working class as assuming a revolutionary subjectivity outside of the capital relation.

For him as for the other critical theorists, the opposition of labour vs. capital has become increasingly co-opted into the functioning of modern society. The labour movement has gained representation in the political system, both in terms of electoral politics and unionization, by forming political parties and labour unions that work within the remit set by the state. e. distributive politics centre on demands for more state intervention, higher wages or other benefits and concessions. I will try to make sense of Habermas’s new social movements theory in three steps, treating it as a logical conclusion of his colonization thesis, his democratic theory, and his distinction between instrumentality and communication.

Second, Habermas’s theory of new social movements can be explained as an element of his deliberative democratic theory (della Porta and Diani 2006: 223–50; Dryzek 1990; 2000; see also Offe 1997). New social movements can be seen as social actors that seek to construct a new public sphere where a deliberative politics outside of state institutions is possible. This requires a civil society that keeps checks on public institutions and corporate organizations, or in Dryzek’s words one that is ‘critical in its orientation to established power structures, including those that operate beneath the constitutional surface of the liberal state, and so insurgent in relation to established institutions’ (Dryzek 2000: 2).

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