Mouffe's Agonistic Model Of Democracy

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in the political sphere, first thing to do is constitute itself from what Derrida calls “constitutive outside”. Mouffe thinks that this the crucial point for her conceptualisation of democracy theory because only if there is a difference in public, there is a power which can be limited by institutions. So modern liberal democracy is under illusion that people can free themselves from forms of power but on the contrary under guise of neutrality liberal democratic institutions practice forms of exclusion and violent acts in order to reach consensus. In nowadays liberal democracy is seen as an only legitimate form of government. Especially after the collapse of U.S.S.R, political theorists who defend the politics is…show more content…
This model presupposes an important distinction between politics and the political. Politics is referred to the ensemble of practices, discourses and institutions which seek to establish the sphere what every people can live side by side although they are in conflictual positions against themselves. The political, on the other hand, is referred to the dimension of antagonism that lies under people’s relations (it can take different types). So under the Mouffe’s democracy, politics’ main aim is to conceive others not as enemy but adversaries. She calls this transformation “antagonism to agonism”. Although she offers something different than Habermas, she underlines that a democratic underground should be established in order to reach her conceptualisation of…show more content…
In my opinion her conceptualisation of democracy has some deficits. First of all her definition of pluralism is not clear enough to build on her model of democracy. What makes radical Mouffe’s conceptualism of democracy lies in pluralism. Mouffe links radicalism with pluralism. In other words, if the opposing people accept the principle of pluralism and reject the unified, monolithic view, this can be named as radicalism. If we go backwards, we have to be pluralistic to be radical. It is no longer necessary to abandon the old submissive, affirmative monistic principles. Pluralism can only be a radical concept if this rainbow approach is adopted. In short, pluralism for Mouffe is radical. She restricts extreme forms of pluralism but how can we distinguish the extreme from non-extreme is unclear. Although she would have said the procedure of distinguishing these forms, her model transforms into something like Habermas’. Even so her model of democracy is very important think from different angle because the notion of adversaries and agonistic pluralism make possible to think differently from political theorists such as Habermas and Rawls. They aim at reaching consensus but Mouffe thinks that consensus is not necessary for democratic politics what people need is agonistic pluralism to live side by

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