Abstract
Agonism as a political theory emphasizes the ontological aspect of conflict in human political interaction. This article aims to shed light on the political practice of agonism – and in doing so on its limits – by viewing 'crisis discourse' as an agonistic political practice. As my analysis of the Dutch Socialist Party and the Freedom Party’s speech in the European Sovereign Debt Crisis shows, crisis discourse aimed to (re)create a ‘people’ and to justify radical change in economic and social structures. Crisis discourse is employed to construct an 'other' that can be based on ethnic and nationalist terms and to justify retroactive application of the law and the stripping of Dutch citizens of their rights. This attention to crisis discourse as an agonistic political practice highlights an unease within agonism itself: where must the agonist accepts limits to the conflict and contestation she so values? The article starts with Chantal Mouffe's answer to this question - her insistence that legitimate conflict must always recognize the shared values of equality and liberty - and proceeds to show that Mouffe's view unnecessarily relies on a deliberative democratic desire for consensus. Other than Mouffe, I draw on Honig’s emphasis of perpetual contestation to propose that the issue of limits can be best answered by reference to the core of agonistic thought: the preservation of the struggle over political norms and processes. It is not shared values or even a shared political space that matters, but that the political space of the ‘people’ – however contested membership therein might be – remains a place that the 'other' can re-enter
Keywords Agonism  Antagonism  Chantal Mouffe  Crisis Discourse  Bonnie Honig  Exclusion
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

The Agonic Freedom of Citizens.James Tully - 1999 - Economy and Society 28 (2):161-182.
Agonism, Antagonism and the Necessity of Care.Keith Breen - 2008 - In Andrew Schaap (ed.), Law and Agonistic Politics. Ashgate Pub. Company.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Agonistic Critiques of Liberalism: Perfection and Emancipation.Thomas Fossen - 2008 - Contemporary Political Theory 7 (4):376–394.
Pluralism Slippery Slopes and Democratic Public Discourse.Maria Paola Ferretti & Enzo Rossi - 2013 - Theoria: A Journal of Social and Political Theory 60 (137):29-47.
Critical Republicanism: Jürgen Habermas and Chantal Mouffe.Gulshan Khan - 2013 - Contemporary Political Theory 12 (4):318-337.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2018-04-02

Total views
260 ( #38,913 of 2,463,235 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
25 ( #32,940 of 2,463,235 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes