The failure of the radical democratic imaginary

  title={The failure of the radical democratic imaginary},
  author={Thomas P. Brockelman},
  journal={Philosophy \& Social Criticism},
  pages={183 - 208}
Starting from the author’s critique of Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe, this essay offers a comprehensive interpretation of Slavoj Žižek’s political theory. ŽiŽek’s position drives a wedge between two concepts foundational to Laclau and Mouffe’s ‘radical democratic theory’, namely ‘antagonism’ and ‘anti-essentialism’. Anti-essentialism, it is argued, carries with it a residual utopianism - i.e. a view of political theory as offering a vision of a desirable radicalized society or a ‘radical… Expand
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