Description : Proposing a novel approach to understanding the contemporary political landscape, Akram draws on the work of Pierre Bourdieu and Margaret Archer on agency and argues the need for an in-depth engagement with concepts of agency to improve the reach and scope of political analysis. Is the way that people engage with politics changing? If so, how well-equipped are we to document and explain the extent and range of the ways in which people are engaging in politics today? This book tackles these questions through a blend of theoretical reflection and empirical research, shedding new light on the relationship between arena and process definitions of politics, and how the social relates to the political. Hitherto unexplored features of agency such as the unconscious and the internal political conversation are shown to be critical in exploring how people mobilise today and how they make sense of their political engagement. Two in-depth case studies of the internal political conversations that individuals hold as well as an analysis of the 2011 UK riots are presented. Making a case for the role of self-expression in politics, this book will be of use for graduates and scholars interested in British politics, political theory, social theory, political sociology, the theory and practice of political engagement and political behaviour.
Description : Rethinking Contemporary Feminist Politics puts forward a timely analysis of contemporary feminism. Critically engaging with both narratives of feminist decline and re-emergence, it draws on poststructuralist political theory to assess current forms of activism in the UK and present a provocative account of recent developments in feminist politics.
Description : Quentin Skinner's classic study The Foundations of Modern Political Thought was first published by Cambridge in 1978. This was the first of a series of outstanding publications that have changed forever the way the history of political thought is taught and practised. Rethinking the Foundations of Modern Political Thought looks afresh at the impact of the original work, asks why it still matters, and considers a number of significant agendas that it still inspires. A very distinguished international team of contributors has been assembled, including John Pocock, Richard Tuck and David Armitage, and the result is an unusually powerful and cohesive contribution to the history of ideas, of interest to large numbers of students of early modern history and political thought. In conclusion, Skinner replies to each chapter and presents his own thoughts on the latest trends and the future direction of the history of political thought.
Description : Offering the first in-depth analysis of the relationship between populism and political meritocracy, this book asks why states with meritocratic systems such as Singapore and China have not faced the populist challenge to the extent that liberal democratic states have. Is political meritocracy immune to populism? Or does it fan its flames? Exploring this puzzle, the authors argue that political meritocracies are simultaneously immune and susceptible to populism. The book maintains that political meritocracy’s focus on the intellect, social skills, and most importantly virtue of political leaders can reduce the likelihood of populist actors rising to power; that meritocracy’s promise of upward mobility for the masses can work against elitism; and that rule by the ‘meritorious’ can help avoid crises, diminishing the political opening for populism. However, it also shows that meritocracy does little to eliminate grievances around political, cultural, and social inequality, instead entrenching a hierarchy – an allegedly ‘just’ one. The book ultimately argues that the more established the system of political meritocracy becomes, the more it opens the door to populist resentment and revolt. Pitched primarily to scholars and postgraduate students in political theory, comparative politics, Asian studies, and political sociology, this book fills an important scholarly gap.
Description : The authors recontextualize contemporary sociological theory to argue that in recent decades sociology has been deeply permeated by a new paradigm, conflict constructionism. Their analysis integrates and sheds new light on eight prominent domains of recent social thought: the micro-level; discourses, framing, and renewed interest in signs and language; the construction of difference and dominance; regulation and punishment; cultural complexity and transculturation; the body; new approaches to the role of the state; and a consistent conflict perspective. The paradigm combines elements of both social construction theory and conflict theory. It has deep roots in critical theory and more recent links to postmodernism. It is associated with postmodern social thought, although it is less radical and more adaptable to empirical inquiry than postmodernism. The authors tie their new conceptualization of social theory to contemporary applications of social theory in everyday life. Features of this text:
Description : Argues that we must rethink the struggle for knowledge, space and power and that the concept of geopolitics needs to be reconceptualized for the twenty-first century.
Description : Social and political theorists have traced in detail how individuals come to possess gender, sex and racial identities. This book examines the nature of these identities. Georgia Warnke argues that identities, in general, are interpretations and, as such, have more in common with textual understanding than we commonly acknowledge. A racial, sexed or gendered understanding of who we and others are is neither exhaustive of the 'meanings' we can be said to have nor uniquely correct. We are neither always, or only, black or white, men or women or males or females. Rather, all identities have a restricted scope and can lead to injustices and contradictions when they are employed beyond that scope. In concluding her argument, Warnke considers the legal and policy implications that follow for affirmative action, childbearing leave, the position of gays in the military and marriage between same-sex partners.
Description : What are the grounds for and limits to obedience to the state? This book offers a fresh analysis of the debate concerning the moral obligation to obey the state, develops a novel account of political obligation and provides the first detailed argument of how a theory of political obligation can apply to subjects of an unjust state.
Description : This guide invites the reader to think about consumption as one factor in the difficult task of building cohesive, sustainable societies based on the principle or universal well-being. The Council or Europe hopes that this reassessment will prompt people to question their choices as consumers: taking account of human rights, decent working conditions, the sustainable use of resources and our legacy to future generations. Surely consumption should be a responsible, socially committed act. An eclectic mix or academic articles, examples and illustrations makes this guide an unusual, informative work which can be readily used as the basis for discussions on this pressing social issue. This book, inspired by a contribution from the European Inter-Network of Ethical and Solidarity-Based Initiatives (IRIS), is intended as a "prototype": readers are free to adapt its contents to their own circumstances, to add relevant examples and to bring the ideas presented to life