The limits of communicative rationality and deliberative democracy

  title={The limits of communicative rationality and deliberative democracy},
  author={Mark Devenney},
  journal={Journal of Power},
  pages={137 - 154}
  • Mark Devenney
  • Published 23 March 2009
  • Political Science
  • Journal of Power
This article argues that Habermas' account of deliberative democracy rests upon a set of untheorized decisions about language and communication derived from his account of formal pragmatics. Assessing the limitations of his formal pragmatics thus demonstrates why the account of deliberative democracy is incapable of adequately addressing asymmetries in power, generated by economic and bio‐political discourses. I contend that disagreement is intrinsic to communication, that agreement represents… 


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