Connolly’s Democratic Pluralism and the Question of State Sovereignty

Newman, Saul. 2008. Connolly’s Democratic Pluralism and the Question of State Sovereignty. The British Journal Of Politics And International Relations, 10(2), pp. 227-240. [Article]

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This article will exploreWilliam Connolly’s notion of democratic pluralism—his attempt to develop
a notion of agonistic democracy that is compatible with pluralism and difference, and that does not
found itself on totalising ideas and essentialist identities. As part of the pluralisation of democracy,
Connolly hints at the possibility of a democratic politics no longer confined to the nation state.
However, this point is not sufficiently developed and contains a number of ambiguities. Here I will
explore what I see as a central tension between the principle of democracy (collective autonomy) and
the principle of state sovereignty. I will draw on the radical tradition of classical anarchism, as well
as Jacques Derrida’s notion of the democracy to come, to try to think democratic ethics and politics
outside the framework of the nation state.

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Date Deposited:

09 Sep 2010 14:48

Last Modified:

30 Jun 2017 12:21

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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