Counter-History of the Present: Untimely Interrogations into Globalization, Technology, Democracy
Gabriel Rockhill is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Villanova University and the author, editor, and translator of many books, including Jacques Rancière: History, Politics, Aesthetics, also published by Duke University Press, and Interventions in Contemporary Thought: History, Politics, Aesthetics.
What Is the Use of Democracy?: Urgency of an Inappropriate Question
2017. "What Is the Use of Democracy?: Urgency of an Inappropriate Question", Counter-History of the Present: Untimely Interrogations into Globalization, Technology, Democracy, Gabriel Rockhill
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Chapter 3 undertakes an untimely investigation into the valorization of democracy in the dominant political imaginary. Drawing on the resources of a radicalized form of historicism, it demonstrates that this is a modern phenomenon and resituates democratophilia in a triumphalist logic of history—where it shares a conceptual bed with globalization and contemporary technology—that has forcefully imposed itself over the last thirty years or so. It prolongs the earlier chapters by elucidating the properly political role played by the attempts to purify the political realm by isolating it from its inscription in specific socioeconomic and cultural worlds. Instead of beginning with the abstract question of the best form of government in general, it concludes by asking whether it would not be better to inquire into the concrete constitution of particular political practices as collective acts of instituting common worlds.