" E v e r y

F o r m o f A r t
H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n"
CH A NTA L
MOUF F E ,
INTE RVIE WE DBY ROSA LYN DE UTSCH E ,
BRA NDE N W. JOSE PH ,
A NDTH OMA S KE E NA N1
Br a nde n W.
Jo s e ph:
Since
Gr e y
Ro o m is
pr im a r ily
de dica t e d t o
que s t io ns
o f a e s -
t he t ic
pr a ct ice ,
I'd like t o
be gin by a s king
ho w
y o u
wo uld unde r s t a nd f o r m s o f
cult ur a l dis co ur s e -f o r
e xa m ple , a r t -ha v ing
a cce s s t o t he
po lit ica l
o r , r a t he r ,
t o t he
s t r ict ly po lit ica l
int he
wa y y o u
ha v e co m e t o de f ine it
t hr o ugh y o ur
wo r k
o n Ca r l Schm it t ?2 A s De r r ida no t e s in Po lit ics
o f F r ie nds hip-a lt ho ugh
we do n't
ne e d t o
go
t o De r r ida f o r t his -" t he
po lit ica l"
e xis t s f o r Schm it t o n t wo le v e ls :
" t he
po lit ica l"
a s a
pa r t icula r a s pe ct
(which
Schm it t is
a lwa y s o ppo s ing
t o " t he
e co no m ic,"
f o r
e xa m ple ,
o r " t he
m o r a l" ),
a nd " t he
po lit ica l"
a s a de t e r m ina t io n
t ha t o ccur s
t hr o ugho ut
a ll o t he r s t r a t a o f t he wo r ld
a nd, t hus ,
po t e nt ia lly
include s
e co no m ics ,
m o r a lit y ,
a nd,
I wo uld
a s s um e ,
cult ur e a nd a e s t he t ics a s we ll. In
y o ur
co nce pt ua liza t io n
o f " t he
po lit ica l,"
ho w do e s it a ct o nt he s e t wo le v e ls ? Or is t he r e
s o m e o t he r a r t icula t io n o f a cult ur a l dis co ur s e a nd a
s t r ict ly po lit ica l
dis co ur s e ?
Cha nt a l Mo uf f e : The dis t inct io n I m a ke is
ins pir e d by
Schm it t .3 It 's
ce r t a inly
no t m a de int he s a m e
wa y by
Schm it t ,
but I t hink
m y
ide a is f a it hf ul t o wha t he s a id.
Wha t I ca ll " t he
po lit ica l"
is t he dim e ns io n o f
a nt a go nis m -t he f r ie nd/e ne m y
dis t inct io n.
A nd,
a s Schm it t
s a y s ,
t his ca n
e m e r ge
o ut o f
a ny
kind o f r e la t io n. It 's
no t
s o m e t hing
t ha t ca nbe lo ca lize d
pr e cis e ly ;
it 's a n
e v e r -pr e s e nt po s s ibilit y .
Wha t
I ca ll
" po lit ics ,"
o n t he o t he r
ha nd,
is t he e ns e m ble o f dis co ur s e s a nd
pr a ct ice s ,
ins t it ut io na l o r e v e n a r t is t ic
pr a ct ice s ,
t ha t co nt r ibut e t o a nd
r e pr o duce
a ce r t a in
o r de r . The s e a r e
a lwa y s
in co ndit io ns t ha t a r e
po t e nt ia lly
co nf lict ua l be ca us e
t he y
a r e
a lwa y s
inf o r m e d
by ,
o r t r a v e r s e d
by ,
t he dim e ns io n o f " t he
po lit ica l."
Int ha t
co nt e xt ,
t he y
ca nbe linke d t o Gr a m s ci's ide a s o f co m m o n s e ns e a nd o f
he ge m o ny .
Po lit ics is
a lwa y s
a bo ut t he
e s t a blis hm e nt ,
t he
r e pr o duct io n,
o r t he de co ns t r uct io n
o f a
he ge m o ny ,
o ne t ha t is
a lwa y s
in r e la t io n t o a
po t e nt ia lly co unt e r -he ge m o nic
o r de r . Since t he dim e ns io n o f " t he
po lit ica l"
is
a lwa y s pr e s e nt , y o u
ca nne v e r ha v e
a
co m ple t e ,
a bs o lut e ,
inclus iv e
he ge m o ny .
Int ha t
co nt e xt ,
a r t is t ic a nd cult ur a l
pr a ct ice s
a r e
a bs o lut e ly
ce nt r a l a s o ne o f t he le v e ls whe r e ide nt if ica t io ns a nd f o r m s
Gr e y
Ro o m
02, Wint e r
2001, pp.
98-125. c. 2001
Gr e y Ro o m ,
Inc. a nd Ma s s a chus e t t s Ins t it ut e o f
Te chno lo gy
99
H a ns H a a cke . De r
Be v o lke r ung
(To t he
Po pula t io n),
2000. De t a il.
Re ichs t a g (Ge r m a nPa r lia m e nt
Building),
Be r lin. ?H a ns H a a cke /
VG Bild-Kuns t . Pho t o : H a ns H a a cke .
98
o f
ide nt it y
a r e co ns t it ut e d. One ca nno t m a ke a dis t inct io n be t we e n
po lit ica l
a r t
a nd
no n-po lit ica l
a r t ,
be ca us e
e v e r y
f o r m o f a r t is t ic
pr a ct ice
e it he r co nt r ibut e s t o
t he
r e pr o duct io n
o f t he
giv e n
co m m o n s e ns e -a nd in t ha t s e ns e is
po lit ica l-
o r co nt r ibut e s t o t he de co ns t r uct io n o r
cr it ique
o f it .
E v e r y
f o r m o f a r t ha s a
po lit -
ica l dim e ns io n.
Ro s a ly n
De ut s che : Tha t 's
why
I,
like
m a ny
a r t is t s a nd
cr it ics ,
a v o id t he t e r m
" po lit ica l
a r t " :
Pr e cis e ly
be ca us e it a s s e r t s t ha t o t he r a r t -inde e d a r t
pe r
s e o r
s o -ca lle d r e a l a r t -is no t
po lit ica l, " po lit ica l
a r t " is a
po we r f ul po lit ica l we a po n,
o ne t ha t is
r o ut ine ly de plo y e d
t o
ghe t t o ize
a r t t ha t a v o ws t he
po lit ica l. Sim ila r ly ,
t he t e r m " f e m inis t a r t " ins inua t e s t ha t a r t it s e lf is f r e e o f s e xua l
po lit ics .
BWJ:
Ye t t he r e 's a
quo t e by
Schm it t t ha t
y o u,
Cha nt a l,
us e
quit e
a
bit ,
a bo ut
libe r a lis m
o s cilla t ing
be t we e n t he m o r a l a nd t he
e co no m ic,
which s e e m s t o
im ply
t ha t t he r e is a le v e l t ha t s o m e ho w do e s no t a cce de t o t he
pr o pe r ly po lit ica l.
CM: Tha t 's whe r e I wa nt t o
dis t inguis h
be t we e n " t he
po lit ica l"
a nd
po lit ics .
So m e a r t is t ic
pr a ct ice s
ca nbe co m e t he lo cus o f " t he
po lit ica l"
in t he Schm it t ia n
s e ns e ,
a s t he dim e ns io n o f
a nt a go nis m , jus t
like
a ny
o t he r kind o f
pr a ct ice ,
whe n
t he y
be co m e co ns t r uct e d int e r m s o f f r ie nd a nd
e ne m y .
The n
t he y
be co m e
po lit ica l
in Schm it t ia n
t e r m s ,
like m o r a l r e la t io ns t ha t ca n be co m e
po lit ica l,
o r like e co -
no m ic r e la t io ns t ha t ca n be co m e
po lit ica l.
A s I
s a id,
" t he
po lit ica l"
is no t s o m e -
t hing
t ha t is lo ca t e d
a ny whe r e s pe cif ic;
it
e m e r ge s
o ut o f
a ny
r e la t io n.
BWJ: A nd it 's
pr e cis e ly
a t t ha t
po int ,
whe n a r t is t ic
pr a ct ice s
a cce de t o t he
le v e l o f t he Schm it t ia n
po lit ica l,
t ha t a ll o f t ho s e ins t it ut io na l f o r ce s co m e int o
pla y -a s t he y
did wit h H a a cke 's s ubm is s io n t o t he
Whit ne y
Bie nnia l t his
y e a r -
t ha t
s a y ,
" t his is no t
a r t ,
it 's
po lit ics
a nd t he r e f o r e s ho uldn't be a llo we d." The
s a m e ,
o f
co ur s e ,
ha ppe ne d
be f o r e wit h H a a cke 's r e a l e s t a t e
pie ce s
in t he 1970s .
RD: Which is a
s upr e m e ly po lit ica l
a ct ,
jus t
a s t he inv o ca t io n o f
m o r a lit y
is
m o s t
po lit ica l
whe n it 's us e d t o e v a de
po lit ics .
Be f o r e t he
int e r v ie w,
Br a nde n
s ugge s t e d
t ha t we dis cus s H a a cke 's ne w wo r k f o r t he
Re ichs t a g,
which is a
go o d
ide a s ince it 's ha r d t o t hink o f a
t o pic
t ha t m o r e
ne a t ly
co m bine s
a r t ,
a r chit e c-
t ur e ,
a nd
po lit ica l philo s o phy , t he r e by br inging
t he f o ur o f us
t o ge t he r .
BWJ: I f o und it
int e r e s t ing
t ha t t he de f init io n o f t he
pe o ple
wit hin a We s t e r n
de m o cr a t ic
s t a t e ,
in t his ca s e
Ge r m a ny ,
ha s be co m e t he
po int
o f H a a cke 's
pr o -
po s a l
o f
pla cing
in
dia lo gue
wit h t he
Re ichs t a g's e xis t ing ins cr ipt io n,
De m
De ut s che n
Vo lke ,
a no t he r o ne
de cla r ing,
De r
Be v o lke r ung.
A t is s ue s e e m s t o be
a r e de f init io n o f t he
ho m o ge ne it y
t ha t
y o u
ha v e dis cus s e d a s
ne ce s s a r y
f o r a de m o -
cr a t ic
s t a t e ,
a r e de f init io n o f t he
po lit ica l
us /t he m o r
f r ie nd/e ne m y
dis t inct io n.
100
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
Ca nt his be co ns ide r e d a n
e xa m ple
o f a ne w
t y pe
o f
po lit ica l
ide nt if ica t io n o r a
r e -ide nt if y ing
o f t he
po lit ica l im a gina r y
t ha t
y o u'v e
be e n
pr o po s ing?
CM: I f ind t his a n
e xt r e m e ly int e r e s t ing
is s ue . It is , a s
Ro s a ly n s a y s , r e a lly
a
pla ce
whe r e
po lit ica l philo s o phy ,
a r t , a nd a r chit e ct ur e co m e
t o ge t he r .
If o ne co n-
s ide r s t his
pie ce
a n
int e r v e nt io n,
s o m e t hing
t ha t wo uld de co ns t r uct o r
que s t io n
t he
wa y
inwhich " t he Ge r m a n
pe o ple "
co uld be
unde r s t o o d,
it is
f a s cina t ing.
A nd
o f co ur s e t ha t wo uld m e a n
que s t io ning
t he ide a t ha t t he Vo lk is unde r s t o o d
o n
a n e t hnic ba s is .
RD: Wha t a r e
y o ur t ho ught s
a bo ut H a a cke 's cho ice o f " t he
po pula t io n"
t o
r e pla ce
o r co nt e s t " t he
pe o ple "
o f t he
Re ichs t a g's e xis t ing ins cr ipt io n?
Do e s t he
t e r m
" po pula t io n" r e s po nd
t o wha t
y o u
co ns ide r t he
pr o ble m
o f ho w t o
im a gine
a
co m m o na lit y
t ha t is
co m pa t ible
wit h
plur a lis m ,
ho w t o f o r m a de m o cr a t ic a lt e r -
na t iv e t o a ut ho r it a r ia n us e s o f t he
pe o ple ?
It s e e m s t o m e t ha t in t he Ge r m a n
co nt e xt ,
dur ing
a
pe r io d
o f ne o -Na zi a nd
a nt i-im m igr a nt
s e nt im e nt ,
" po pula t io n"
ca lls f o r t he inclus io n o f no n-cit ize n
pe r m a ne nt
r e s ide nt s in t he de f init io n o f
t he
pe o ple .
But I a ls o t hink t ha t H a a cke 's
que s t io n
r e s o na t e s in a f a r br o a de r
co nt e xt : a ll We s t e r n cit ie s t ha t a r e m a r ke d
by unpr e ce de nt e d
num be r s o f no n-
We s t e r n
f o r e igne r s -t he
r e s ult o f
glo ba l m igr a t io n
s t r e a m s -a nd
by
v io le nce
a ga ins t s t r a nge r s .
CM: If H a a cke we r e
pr o po s ing
t o
r e pla ce
t he
ins cr ipt io n
De m De ut s che n Vo lke
by
De r
Be v o lke r ung,
I wo uldn't f ind t his
a de qua t e .
I do n't t hink t ha t de r
Be v o lke r ung,
" t he
po pula t io n,"
is a
po lit ica l co nce pt .
Inde e d,
s o m e o f t he dis -
cus s io ns in
Ge r m a ny po int , pe r ha ps unkno wingly ,
t o t ha t f a ct in
a r guing
t ha t t he
pie ce
is s o m e ho w a nt ico ns t it ut io na l. " The
po pula t io n"
is no t a
co nce pt
t ha t ca nbe
t he lo cus o f
po pula r s o v e r e ignt y .
It 's a
de s cr ipt iv e , s o cio lo gica l co nce pt .
A nd t he
Re ichs t a g
m us t ,
o f
co ur s e ,
be t he lo cus o f t he
pe o ple
in a
po lit ica l
s e ns e . Tha t
do e s n't m e a nt ha t " t he
pe o ple "
m us t be unde r s t o o d
o nly
in t e r m s o f
r a ce ,
o r
e v e n,
ne ce s s a r ily ,
in t e r m s o f t he
pe o ple
who a r e a t t he m o m e nt Ge r m a ncit ize ns .
If H a a cke 's
pie ce
is s e e n a s a
wa y
o f
que s t io ning
t he m a nne r in which " t he
Ge r m a n
pe o ple "
is
cur r e nt ly
de f ine d,
t he n it is a
v e r y int e r e s t ing
int e r v e nt io n. In
t e r m s o f
po lit ica l philo s o phy ,
it
po int s
t o t he ne e d t o r e de f ine " t he
pe o ple ,"
t o
e xt e nd it
by int r o ducing pe o ple
who ha v e unt il no w no t be e n co ns ide r e d cit ize ns .
But t ha t s ho uld no t
ha ppe n by a ba ndo ning
t he ide a o f " t he
pe o ple "
be ca us e it 's
ne ce s s a r ily
r e la t e d t o e it he r a Na zi
pa s t
o r t o a ce r t a in
t y pe
o f e xclus io n. The e xis -
t e nce o f a ce r t a in
t y pe
o f e xclus io n is
s o m e t hing
t ha t
po lit ics
ca nno t do wit ho ut .
Tha t is o ne o f t he
que s t io ns
I'v e be e n
t r y ing
t o a ddr e s s in
m y t hinking
a bo ut
Pa ge s 102-103:
H a ns H a a cke .
Sha po ls ky
e t a l.
Ma nha t t a nRe a l E s t a t e
H o ldings :
A Re a l-Tim e So cia l
Sy s t e m ,
a s o f
Ma y 1, 1971,
1971. De t a il.
cH a ns H a a cke /VG Bild-Kuns t
Ins t a lla t io nPho t o : F r e d Scr ut o n.
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 101
102 Gr e y Ro o m 2
if f e
I " E v e r y F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 103
Schm it t a nd t he ide a o f " t he de m o s ." Yo u ca nno t ha v e a de m o s if it is no t in s o m e
s e ns e e xclus iv e . The
v e r y
ide a o f " t he de m o s "
s im ult a ne o us ly im plie s
bo t h a
lo gic
o f inclus io n wit hin a nd e xclus io n wit ho ut . It ca n ne v e r be t he ca s e t ha t
e v e r y o ne
who
ha ppe ns
t o be in a ce r t a in
t e r r it o r y -be
it F r a nce o r
Ge r m a ny -
s ho uld be e nt it le d t o v o t e . The r e ne e ds t o be a de f init io n o f who co ns t it ut e s t he
bo dy
o f
cit ize ns ,
who co ns t it ut e s " t he
pe o ple ."
This is
s o m e t hing
t ha t ne e ds t o
be dis cus s e d in
Ge r m a ny -le s s
no w,
pe r ha ps ,
wit h t he br o a de r
im m igr a t io n
la ws ,
a lt ho ugh
t he
co nce pt io n
o f " t he
pe o ple "
is s t ill t o o r e s t r ict e d.
H o we v e r ,
it ca n
ne v e r be a
que s t io n
o f
r e pla cing
t he
po lit ica l co nce pt io n
o f " t he
pe o ple "
wit h t he
s o cio lo gica l co nce pt
o f " t he
po pula t io n."
Tho m a s Ke e na n: So m e ho w H a a cke 's
Re ichs t a g pie ce im plicit ly
f o llo ws a
na r r a t iv e f r o m
F o uca ult ,
do e s n't it ? The r e 's a s hif t f r o m a no t io n o f
po lit ics
t ha t
r e f e r s
ult im a t e ly
t o " t he
pe o ple "
a nd t he
lo gic
o f
po pula r s o v e r e ignt y -po lit ics
unde r s t o o d a s t he
pr o ble m
o f
s o v e r e ignt y -t o
wha t F o uca ult ca lle d
" bio -po lit ics "
wit hin a
dis ciplina r y r e gim e ,
in which t he
pr iv ile ge d ca t e go r ie s
a r e ,
pr e cis e ly ,
" po pula t io n"
a nd
" t e r r it o r y ." 4
CM: Ye s . Tha t is
r ight .
But t he s a m e
o bje ct io n
co uld be m a de t o wha t F o uca ult
ca lls
" bio -po lit ics ,"
which
de s igna t e s
t he f o r m o f
go v e r nm e nt a lit y de v e lo pe d by
libe r a lis m . Libe r a lis m do e s
a wa y
wit h
po lit ica l co nce pt s
a nd
a t t e m pt s
t o
r e pla ce
t he m wit h
no n-po lit ica l
o ne s like
" hum a nit y "
o r
" po pula t io n."
F o r t ha t
r e a s o n,
t he
lo gic
o f libe r a lis m is
a lwa y s
int e ns io n wit h t he de m o cr a t ic
o ne ,
which
r e quir e s
t he
po s s ibilit y
o f
dr a wing
a f r o nt ie r be t we e n who
be lo ngs
a nd who do e s no t
be lo ng.
This is
why
I ha v e
r e ce nt ly a r gue d
t ha t we s ho uld
a ckno wle dge
t he
pa r a -
do xica l na t ur e o f libe r a l
de m o cr a cy .5
RD: H a a cke m a ke s a t le a s t t wo
ge s t ur e s
inhis ins t a lla t io n. The
la r ge r ge s t ur e
is
r a is ing
t he de m o cr a t ic
que s t io n,
t ha t
is ,
m a king
" t he
pe o ple "
a
que s t io n.
The
wo r k s e t s in m o t io n a n
o ngo ing
de ba t e in t he
v e r y
s e a t o f s t a t e
po we r ,
which in
a
de m o cr a cy
r e s ide s e ls e whe r e : in t he
pe o ple .
A nd t he
s y m bo l
o f t ha t
po we r
is
e m bo die d in t he
Re ichs t a g,
a ne o cla s s ica l
building,
wit h a ll t he o bv io us co nno -
t a t io ns o f
s o lid,
t im e le s s t r ut hs t ha t
s uppo s e dly
de r iv e f r o m a s o ur ce o ut s ide t he
s o cia l wo r ld. To
m e ,
t he wo r k is like a
pe r f o r m a nce
o f Cla ude Le f o r t 's ide a t ha t
de m o cr a cy e m e r ge s
a nd
s t a y s
a liv e
o nly
whe n t he
m e a ning
o f
s o cie t y
is unce r -
t a in a nd t he r e f o r e
o pe n
t o
que s t io n.6
The
s pa ce
be t we e n t he t wo
Re ichs t a g
ins cr ipt io ns ,
t he
s pa ce
o f t he
que s t io n,
is t he he a r t o f t he wo r k.
A s e co nd
ge s t ur e
is
o pe ning
a
que s t io n s pe cif ic
t o t he Ge r m a ns it e . The s t a t us
o f
im m igr a nt s
is
go ing
t o be r a is e d inv ie we r s ' m inds
im m e dia t e ly .
So
" po pula t io n"
Po r t ico , Re ichs t a g (Ge r m a n
Pa r lia m e nt
Building),
Be r lin.
Pho t o : St e f a n Mille r .
104
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
is n't
r e a lly
a ne ut r a l
t e r m ;
it 's
a lr e a dy po lit icize d by
t he
pr e s e nt
co nt e xt . H a a cke
is
v e r y
ca r e f ul t o
pa y
a t t e nt io n t o t he m o m e nt . Yo ur
o bje ct io n
t o
" po pula t io n"
r e m inds m e a bit o f
y o ur o bje ct io n
t o
" hum a nit y "
a s a
po lit ica l ca t e go r y .
Yo u
s a y
t ha t t his
ca t e go r y -be ca us e
it is
s e e m ingly
a ll-inclus iv e -de nie s t ha t " t he
pe o ple "
is co ns t it ut e d
t hr o ugh
e xclus io n a nd a m o m e nt o f clo s ur e . The r e f o r e it e v a de s
t he
po lit ica l.
H o w do
y o u
f e e l a bo ut t he o r ie s which
pr o po s e
t ha t in cur r e nt cir -
cum s t a nce s we s ho uld co ns t r uct a
po lit ica l s ubje ct
wit h a dif f e r e nt
ide nt it y
t ha n
t ha t o f t he cit ize n? F o r
e xa m ple , Gio r gio A ga m be n, dr a wing
o nH a nna h
A r e ndt ,
wa nt s t o m a ke t he
r e f uge e ,
who
int e r r upt s
t he
na t io n-s t a t e ,
t he
ke y po lit ica l f ig-
ur e f o r o ur t im e .7
CM:
A r e ndt ,
whe n s he
s pe a ks
o f t he
r ight
t o ha v e
r ight s ,
ins is t s t ha t t he
r ight
t o ha v e
r ight s
is
cit ize ns hip.
If
y o u
a r e no t a
cit ize n,
y o u
do n't ha v e t he
r ight
t o ha v e
r ight s .
Thus ,
in
f a ct ,
s he ins is t s
v e r y
m uch o n t he
im po r t a nce
o f
be ing
a cit ize n.
She do e s no t
pr o po s e
t he
r e f uge e
a s t he ne w
po lit ica l s ubje ct ,
but s e e s t he
r e f uge e
a s a
s y m pt o m
o f a
pr o ble m .
The s o lut io n is no t t o
r e pla ce
t he
gua r a nt e e
o f t he
cit ize n
by
t he
gua r a nt e e
o f t he
r e f uge e .
Ra t he r ,
we s ho uld m a ke t ho s e
r e f uge e s
cit ize ns o f a
co unt r y
be ca us e it is
o nly
o nt ha t ba s is t ha t
t he y
will ha v e
r ight s .
A r e ndt
is cr it ica l o f t he ide a o f
pur e ly
hum a n
r ight s .
She t hinks t ha t t he r e is
s o m e t hing
v e r y pr o ble m a t ic
a bo ut hum a n
r ight s
be ca us e ,
if
t he y
a r e no t a t t he s a m e t im e
cit ize ns hip r ight s , t he y
a r e a bs t r a ct a nd do no t
co r r e s po nd
t o
a ny t hing.
RD: A r e ndt a ls o
s a y s
t ha t t he
r ight
t o ha v e
r ight s
is t he
r ight
o f
e v e r y
indi-
v idua l t o
be lo ng
t o
hum a nit y .
If t he
r ight
t o ha v e
r ight s
is unde r s t o o d a s t he
r ight
t o de cla r e
r ight s ,
which is t o
s a y
t he
r ight
t o
po lit ics ,
ho w ca n we
s a y
t ha t
o nly
t he cit ize n ca n de cla r e t his
r ight ?
TK:
Obv io us ly ,
t he
que s t io n
o f
r ight s
a nd t he ir
" ba s is ,"
hum a n o r
o t he r wis e ,
is
unus ua lly co m plica t e d.
The
que s t io n go e s
t o t he he a r t o f wha t
po lit ics m ight
m e a n f o r us . E t ie nne Ba liba r a ddr e s s e s t his
e le ga nt ly
in his
r e a ding
o f t he 1789
F r e nch
De cla r a t io n,
which cla im e d
r ight s
f o r " m a n a nd cit ize n." Is it be ca us e
y o u'r e
a cit ize n t ha t
y o u
ha v e a cce s s t o hum a n
r ight s ?
Or is it be ca us e
y o u'r e
a
105
hum a n t ha t
y o u
ha v e a cce s s t o cit ize n's
r ight s ?
The r e 's a
t e ns io n,
f unda m e nt a l
o r a t le a s t
ir r e ducible ,
t he r e . A r e ndt t r ie s t o s o lv e it in t he dir e ct io n o f
pr iv i-
le ging
a nd
de m a nding cit ize ns hip
f o r a ll hum a ns . H um a ns do n't be co m e
po lit -
ica l unt il
t he y
a r e
a cce pt e d, r e co gnize d,
a nd
le git im a t e d
a s cit ize ns . Tha t 's t he
po lit icizing
m o v e in A r e ndt : t o ins is t t ha t hum a ns ha v e t o be
gr a nt e d
a cce s s t o
cit ize ns hip
o r e ls e
t he y
do n't ha v e
r ight s .
Wha t
Ro s a ly n
is
s ugge s t ing,
I
t hink,
is t ha t it wo uld be
pla us ible
t o
s a y
t ha t hum a ns ha v e a kind o f a
m e t a -r ight ,
a
r ight
t o
po lit ics .
It 's no t
a ut o m a t ica lly gr a nt e d;
it ha s t o be
s t r uggle d
f o r a nd s o
o n-like a ll
r ight s , by
t he
wa y -but
whe n
y o u,
a s it
we r e ,
m a ke it int o
po lit ics ,
t he n
y o u
t r a ns ce nd
y o ur m e r e ly
hum a n e xis t e nce . Tha t 's wha t
y o u
s t r iv e f o r .
The
de po lit icizing
m o v e is t o
e je ct pe o ple
f r o m
cit ize ns hip
ba ck int o
hum a nit y ,
which is wha t A r e ndt wa nt s t o
f ight a ga ins t .
The
hy phe n
in wha t Ba liba r ca lls
t he " m a n-cit ize n" -he ins is t s o n t he " ide nt if ica t io n" o r t he
" e qua t io n"
o f t he
a ppa r e nt ly
dif f e r e nt
co nce pt s , o r igina lly jo ine d by
t he " a nd" o f t he
De cla r a t io n,
a nd r e wr it e s it wit h a
hy phe n
a nd a n
e qua l s ign--is
dif f icult t o
r e a d,
a nd
po lit -
ica lly im po r t a nt , pr e cis e ly
be ca us e it
o pe ns
t he
po s s ibilit y
o f t his
s lippa ge .
CM: I s t ill t hink
" hum a nit y "
is no t a
po lit ica l co nce pt , a lt ho ugh
it ca n
cle a r ly
be us e d in a
po lit ica l wa y .
The r he t o r ic o f
r ight s
a nd t he r he t o r ic o f
hum a nit y
a r e
v e r y po we r f ul
ins t r um e nt s in
int e r r upt ing
t he
da nge r
t ha t is ins cr ibe d in t he
de m o cr a t ic
lo gic:
t he m o v e m e nt t o wa r d
e xclus io n,
which is wha t I t r ie d t o
e xpla in
in
m y
a r t icle o n Schm it t . To o
m a ny
libe r a l de m o cr a t s be lie v e t ha t libe r -
t y
a nd
e qua lit y ne ce s s a r ily go t o ge t he r .
The r e is
a ct ua lly
a
v e r y pr o f o und
t e ns io n
be t we e n t he t wo
ide a s ,
a nd in
m y
la s t bo o k t his de m o cr a t ic
pa r a do x
is
pr e cis e ly
wha t I t r ie d t o
e xpla in.
Ina ce r t a in
s e ns e ,
I t hink Schm it t is
r ight
whe n he
s a y s
t ha t libe r a lis m
ne ga t e s de m o cr a cy
a nd
de m o cr a cy ne ga t e s
libe r a lis m
be ca us e ,
in
f a ct ,
t he y
a r e t wo dif f e r e nt
lo gics
which a r e
ult im a t e ly inco m pa t ible .
Whe r e I
t hink Schm it t is
wr o ng
is whe n he
s a y s
t ha t ,
a s a
co ns e que nce ,
libe r a l
de m o cr a cy
is a n unv ia ble
r e gim e
a nd m us t
ne ce s s a r ily
s e lf -de s t r uct . Wha t I'v e be e n
t r y ing
t o s ho w is
t ha t ,
in
f a ct ,
wha t he s e e s a s t he m a in f unda m e nt a l we a kne s s o f libe r a l
106 Gr e y Ro o m
de m o cr a cy
is it s
gr e a t s t r e ngt h.
Ine s s e nce , t he a r t icula t io n o f t ho s e t wo
inde pe n-
de nt
lo gics
cr e a t e s t he
s pa ce
in which
plur a lis t de m o cr a cy
is
po s s ible .
Wit hin
t he
pur e lo gic
o f
de m o cr a cy
is ins cr ibe d t he
po s s ibilit y
o f
t o t a lit a r ia nis m , a nd
t he
lo gic
o f
libe r a lis m , wit ho ut it s a r t icula t io n wit h
de m o cr a cy ,
wo uld be a
pur e
lo gic
o f
dis s e m ina t io n,
a
lo gic
o f dif f e r e nce wit ho ut
a ny po s s ibilit y
f o r t he
s t r uggle
f o r
e qua lit y
o r
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt .
Wit hin t he a r t icula t io n o f t he s e t wo
lo gics ,
ho w-
e v e r ,
libe r a lis m a nd t he r e f e r e nce t o
hum a nit y co ns t a nt ly
s ubv e r t t he t o t a lit a r ia n
t e nde ncy
t o e xclus io n ins cr ibe d wit hin t he de m o cr a t ic
pr o je ct .
The de m o cr a t ic
lo gic
o f
cr e a t ing
a de m o s a nd
e s t a blis hing
a f r o nt ie r is a ls o
wha t
a llo ws f o r t he cr e a t io n o f
cit ize ns hip
a nd t he e xe r cis e o f
r ight s .
The e xe r cis e o f
r ight s
is t he
im po r t a nt pa r t
o f t he
e qua t io n.
F o r ,
t he libe r a l
lo gic
is a
lo gic
o f t he
a s s e r t io n o f
r ight s ,
but it 's
o nly
wit hin it s a r t icula t io n wit h
de m o cr a cy -t hr o ugh
pa r t icipa t io n
in a
de m o s ,
t hr o ugh be ing
a de m o cr a t ic cit ize n-t ha t
y o u
ca n e xe r -
cis e
r ight s .
It 's o ne
t hing
t o ha v e
r ight s ,
it 's a no t he r t o be a ble t o e xe r cis e t ho s e
r ight s .
Wit ho ut t he link be t we e n libe r a lis m 's
r ight s
a nd
de m o cr a cy ,
we wo uld
jus t
ha v e
r ight s ,
hum a n
r ight s ,
wit ho ut t he
po s s ibilit y
o f
e xe r cis ing
t he m .
Tha t ,
I
t hink,
is wha t A r e ndt wa s
s a y ing.
If
y o u
do n't ha v e t he
po s s ibilit y
o f
be ing
a
cit ize n o f a
na t io n,
y o u
ca n't e xe r cis e
y o ur r ight s .
But whe r e I s e e t he
im po r t a nce
o f t he ide a o f
" hum a nit y "
is in it s
ca pa cit y
t o
int e r r upt
t he ide a o f " t he de m o s "
a nd
br ing
t o t he f o r e t he f a ct t ha t a de m o s is
a lwa y s pr e dica t e d
o n t he e xclus io n
o f ce r t a in
pe o ple .
RD: So
" po pula t io n"
ca n be us e d in t he s a m e
wa y s
a s
" hum a nit y ."
CM: Ye s .
RD: But ins o f a r a s
" po pula t io n"
br e a ks t he
ide nt it y
be t we e n bir t h a nd na t io n-
a lit y ,
it is
po lit icizing,
no t
ne ut r a lizing.
A ls o ,
it 's s o
de a dpa n,
whe r e a s
" hum a nit y "
is a
v e r y ins pir ing co nce pt .
Tha t 's o ne r e a s o n
pe o ple o bje ct e d
t o H a a cke 's
pie ce .
H o w ca n
y o u
be
ins pir e d by
t he t e r m " t he
po pula t io n" ?
Ca n
y o u im a gine s a y ing
" we ,
t he
po pula t io n" ?
But I r e a d s o m e whe r e t ha t H a a cke co ns ide r e d t he unin-
s pir ing qua lit y
o f t he t e r m t o be a v ir t ue . Giv e n Ge r m a n
his t o r y -a m o ng m a ny
o t he r his t o r ie s -o ne ca n unde r s t a nd
why .
CM: It 's
pr o ble m a t ic
t o
r e pla ce
t he ide a o f " t he
pe o ple " by
t he ide a o f " t he
po pula t io n,"
f o r t he la t t e r is no t
s o m e t hing
t ha t ca n
pr o v ide
a n ide nt if ica t io n. A
de m o cr a t ic cit ize n is
s o m e bo dy
who ide nt if ie s wit h
be ing pa r t
o f " t he
pe o ple ,"
a nd
m e r e ly be ing pa r t
o f t he
po pula t io n
is
no t ,
in t his
s e ns e ,
a
po lit ica l
ide nt if i-
ca t io n. It s
im po r t a nce
is in
s ho wing
t he lim it a t io ns t ha t
go
int o t he de f init io n o f
" t he
pe o ple ,"
o r ,
in t his
ca s e ,
" t he Ge r m a n
pe o ple ."
Who co ns t it ut e s t he Ge r m a n
H a ns H a a cke . De r
Be v o lke r ung
(To t he
Po pula t io n), 2000.
Re ichs t a g (Ge r m a n Pa r lia m e nt
Building),
Be r lin. ?H a ns H a a cke /VG
Bild-Kuns t Pho t o : H a ns H a a cke .
Mo uf f e '
" E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 107
pe o ple ?
In
Ge r m a ny ,
t he r e a r e
o bv io us ly pe o ple
who a r e no t
pa r t
o f t he Ge r m a n
na t io n,
s o ho w ca n we r e de f ine t he Ge r m a n
pe o ple
s o t ha t t he
ga p
be t we e n t he
pe o ple
a nd t he
po pula t io n
will be m inim ize d?
But , e v e n
t ho ugh
we s ho uld
t r y
t o m a ke t he Ge r m a n
pe o ple
a s inclus iv e a s
po s s ible ,
t he r e will ne v e r be a co m -
ple t e
ide nt if ica t io n be t we e n t he
po pula t io n
a nd t he
pe o ple .
BWJ:
Int ha t
s e ns e ,
wha t H a a cke 's
pie ce
e s t a blis he s is a
pe r m a ne nt
m e cha nis m
o f
s ubv e r t ing
o r
cr it iquing
t he his t o r ica l
m e a ning
o f t he Vo lk a t a
pa r t icula r
m o m e nt in
t im e ,
a m e cha nis m
by
which o ne ca n dis a r t icula t e a nd r e a r t icula t e
t he ide a o f " t he
pe o ple ."
CM:
Ye s ,
a nd t his is
ha ppe ning co ns t a nt ly .
F r o m t ha t
po int
o f v ie w I f ind t he
wo r k
r e a lly int e r e s t ing.
It 's a
que s t io n
o f
co ns t a nt ly m a king pe o ple
a wa r e o f t he
ga p
be t we e n t he
pe o ple
a nd t he
po pula t io n.
But
y o u
ca nno t
s im ply r e pla ce
" t he
pe o -
ple ."
In
po lit ics ,
in de m o cr a t ic
po lit ics , y o u
ne e d a f o r m o f ide nt if ica t io n. The
Be v 6lke r ung
is no t a
po lit ica l co nce pt .
BWJ:
If
" po pula t io n"
is t o o
s o cio lo gica l
a
co nce pt
t o be co m e a
po lit ica l co nce pt ,
wha t is t he m e cha nis m
by
which o ne t he n r e a r t icula t e s " t he
po lit ica l" ?
Is t he r e
a ny wa y
t he
s o cio lo gica l co nce pt
o f t he
po pula t io n
ca n be co m e a
po lit ica l
co n-
ce pt ,
wit ho ut
s im ply a cce s s io ning
m o r e
pe o ple
t o t he Vo lk wit h a ll o f t he his -
t o r ica l co nno t a t io ns t ha t it ha s in Ge r m a n? Ino t he r
wo r ds ,
ca n o ne r e a r t icula t e
" t he
po pula t io n"
a s a
po lit ica l
ide nt if ica t io n wit hin a libe r a l
E ur o pe a n
de m o c-
r a t ic
s o cie t y ?
CM: A nd a ba ndo n t he t e r m Vo lk? I t hink t ha t
co nce pt s
like " t he
pe o ple " pla y
s uch a n
im po r t a nt
r o le int he
po lit ica l im a gina r y
t ha t
t he y
s ho uldn't be a ba ndo ne d.
The y
s ho uld
r e a lly
be r e de f ine d. The r e
is ,
o f
co ur s e ,
t he who le
que s t io n
in
Ge r m a ny
o f Na zis m a nd
pe o ple a r guing
t ha t t he Ge r m a n
la ngua ge
ha s be e n t o o t a int e d
by
it ... but I t hink t ha t 's
v e r y da nge r o us .
If t he Le f t do e s no t
o ccupy
t ha t
t e r r a in,
if
it do e s no t
a ppr o pr ia t e
a nd m o bilize t ho s e
s y m bo ls ,
it le a v e s t ha t t e r r a int o t he
Right .
I wo uld no t wa nt t o
r e pla ce
t he ide a o f " t he
Vo lk,"
but co nt e s t it a nd r e de f ine
it in t he dir e ct io n o f inclus io n.
Tha t 's ,
a f t e r
a ll,
wha t 's be e n
ha ppe ning r e ce nt ly
wit h t he ne w Ge r m a n
im m igr a t io n
la ws . I do n't t hink t ha t
y o u
ca n
s a y
t ha t t he
ide a o f " t he Vo lk" ha s be e n s o
a bs o lut e ly
o r
de f init e ly
t a int e d
by
Na zis m t ha t it
ca n't be us e d.
TK: Yo u s a id e a r lie r t ha t o ne o f t he
s igns
t ha t
Be v o lke r ung
is n't a
po lit ica l
ca t e go r y
is t ha t o ne ca n be
int e r po la t e d
o r
ide nt if y
wit h Vo lk but no t wit h t he
Be v o lke r ung. Why
no t ?
Why
co uldn't
y o u im a gine
t he
Be v o lke r ung
a s a
po lit -
ica l
ca t e go r y ?
Le t 's m o v e
s light ly
t o t he
s o ut h,
t o t he f o r m e r
Yugo s la v ia ,
a nd
108
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
t hink a bo ut t he
Yugo s la v e quiv a le nt
o f Vo lk, which is na r o d, t he na t io n o r t he
pe o ple .
Bo s nia
r ight
no w,
a f t e r
Da y t o n,
is
e f f e ct iv e ly
div ide d int o t hr e e
s e ct o r s ,
o r ga nize d
in e t hno -na t io na l t e r m s :
Cr o a t ia n, Se r bia n,
a nd s o -ca lle d Mus lim
o r
Bo s nia c. F o r
m e ,
t he
po lit ica l m e a ning
o f t he wa r t he r e wa s t ha t t he
Sa r a je v o
go v e r nm e nt , pr im a r ily
Bo s nia c,
f o ught a ga ins t
t he
co nce pt ,
t he
po lit ica l pr in-
ciple ,
o f t he
na r o d,
in f a v o r o f
s o m e t hing o nly lo o s e ly
t r a ns la t e d a s
" m ult i-
e t hnicit y " -in
t he na m e o f t he
pe o ple ,
a ll t he dif f e r e nt
pe o ple ,
who
ha ppe ne d
t o liv e t he r e . It wa s a wa r o f t he
ide o lo gy
o f t he
na r o d,
o f " t he
pe o ple "
o r
" t he
Vo lk,"
a ga ins t
a
po lit ics
o f
m ixing
o r
co nf us io n,
o f m ult icult ur a lis m in t he r ich
s e ns e ,
a nd s o o n. So t he r e
y o u
ha d a r a t he r Schm it t ia n
pa r a digm
o f a
wa r ,
o f a
div is io n be t we e n f r ie nd a nd
e ne m y .
But o n o ne s ide it wa s o nbe ha lf o f a no t io n
o f
Vo lk, na r o d,
a nd o n t he o t he r s ide it wa s
a ga ins t
t ha t
v e r y co nce pt , a ga ins t
t ha t de f init io n o f
po lit ics
it s e lf .
CM: We ne e d t o
s pe cif y
a t wha t le v e l we a r e
s pe a king
o f t he
pe o ple .
Whe n I
t hink o f " t he
pe o ple " -a nd
t his is wha t I t hink whe n I t hink o f t he
Re ichs t a g-
t he
pe o ple
is t he
co m m unit y
o f
cit ize ns ,
t he o ne s f o r who m t he
Re ichs t a g
is t he
pla ce
a nd
s y m bo l
o f
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt .
The
pe o ple
a r e a ll t ho s e who ha v e t he
r ight
t o be
pa r t
o f t his de m o cr a t ic
a s s e m bly
o f t he
cit ize ns ,
t he
bo dy
o f t he co ns t it ue nt s
o f t he cit ize ns who a r e
go ing
t o m a ke la ws .
TK: Wha t H a a cke is
po int ing
o ut is t ha t t he r e is a
la r ge
num be r o f
pe o ple
who
o ught
t o be include d in
t ha t ,
who a r e n't .
CM: Of
co ur s e ,
H a a cke 's
a r t is t ic,
po lit ica l
int e r v e nt io n is
co ns t a nt ly s ho wing
t ha t " t he
pe o ple "
is
s o m e t hing
t ha t is
dis cur s iv e ly
co ns t r uct e d
dif f e r e nt ly
a t
dif f e r e nt m o m e nt s . It is no t a
que s t io n
o f
cha lle nging
" t he
pe o ple "
a s a ne s s e nt ia l-
is t
ca t e go r y
t ha t m us t be a ba ndo ne d. Wit h t he ne w la ws in
Ge r m a ny ,
" t he
pe o -
ple "
is no t t he s a m e
t hing
a s it wa s unde r H e lm ut Ko hl. The r e a r e
s t ill,
o f
co ur s e ,
t o o
m a ny
e xclus io ns ,
a nd we s t ill wa nt m uch m o r e o f t he
Be v o lke r ung
t o be co m e
pa r t
o f t he
Vo lk,
but it is
im po r t a nt
t o m a int a in t his dif f e r e nce be t we e n t he
e m pir ica l
f a ct o f who
ha ppe ns
t o be
liv ing
wit hin t his
co unt r y
a t a
giv e n
m o m e nt
a nd who is a cit ize n. No t t o do s o wo uld
put
a ne nd t o
de m o cr a cy ,
be ca us e it wo uld
cr e a t e a
de m o cr a cy
wit ho ut a de m o s . Yo u ca n't ha v e a de m o s wit ho ut
dr a wing
t he line be t we e n t ho s e who a r e
pa r t
o f it a nd t ho s e who a r e no t .
RD: I unde r s t a nd
y o ur po int .
But if t he
cit ize n,
no t
m a n,
is in
r e a lit y
t he be a r e r
o f hum a n
r ight s ,
ho w do we t hink a bo ut t he lim it s o f t he na t io na l
po lit ica l
co n-
s cie nce , which,
a cco r ding
t o
Julia Kr is t e v a ,
m a ke s us co ns ide r " it no r m a l t ha t
t he r e a r e ...
pe o ple
who do no t ha v e t he s a m e
r ight s
a s we do " ?9 H o w ca n we
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 109
r e co ncile Kr is t e v a 's ca ut io n wit h t he
ne ce s s it y
o f t he de m o s ?
CM: But in o r de r t o t a ke ca r e o f t ha t
s it ua t io n,
y o u
do n't ne e d t o a ba ndo n
t he
ide a o f t he
f o r e igne r a lt o ge t he r .
It 's a
que s t io n
o f whe r e
y o u
dr a w t he
line , but
y o u
ne e d t o dr a w t he line . I do n't t hink it is a
que s t io n
o f
no r m a lizing
t he
s it ua -
t io n o f t he
f o r e igne r ,
be ca us e it 's
a lwa y s
a line t ha t is
co ns t a nt ly
s ubv e r t e d, t ha t
is
co ns t a nt ly be ing put
int o
que s t io n.
St ill,
in o r de r t o
put
it int o
que s t io n, y o u
ha v e t o ha v e it .
H e r e ,
o ne ne e ds t o
dis t inguis h
be t we e n hum a n
r ight s
a nd cit i-
ze ns hip r ight s .
I ca n't
im a gine
ho w we ca n
ge t
r id o f t he ide a o f t he
f o r e igne r ,
but
be ing
a
f o r e igne r
in a
co unt r y
do e s n't m e a n t ha t
y o u
lo s e a ll o f
y o ur r ight s .
The r e
a r e
m a ny r ight s
t ha t
y o u
s t ill ha v e . But wha t I'm
t a lking
a bo ut
s pe cif ica lly
a r e t he
de m o cr a t ic
r ight s
o f
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt ,
t he
r ight
t o v o t e a nd s o o n.
TK: But wha t is t he
po lit ica l m e a ning
o f t ho s e hum a n
r ight s
t ha t
s upe r s e de
o r s o m e ho w e xce e d de m o cr a t ic
cit ize ns hip r ight s ?
A r e t he
o nly int e r e s t ing
po lit ica l r ight s
t ho s e t ha t de r iv e f r o m
cit ize ns hip?
Or is it
po s s ible
t o
be gin
t o
de f ine wha t t he
po lit ica l
cha r a ct e r o f t ho s e
s t r ict ly
hum a n
r ight s m ight
be ? We
co uld
be gin
t ha t
a na ly s is by e xa m ining
t he
incr e a s ing
num be r o f t r a ns na t io na l
ins t it ut io ns t ha t cla im
t o ,
a nd
incr e a s ingly
do ,
ha v e t he
ca pa cit y -t he
e co no m -
ic
ca pa cit y
a nd t he
m ilit a r y -po lit ica l
f o r ce -t o
e xe r cis e ,
a s
y o u r ight f ully put
it ,
o r t o a s s is t in t he e xe r cis e o f t ho s e
r ight s .
Whe t he r we 'r e
t a lking
a bo ut hum a n-
it a r ia n NGOs
[no ngo v e r nm e nt a l
a id
o r ga niza t io ns ],
which wie ld
incr e a s ingly
la r ge
a m o unt s o f
po we r
a nd e v e n ha v e t he
po s s ibilit y
o f
o r ga nizing m ilit a r y
f o r ce ;
o r t he
m e dia ;
o r t he
E ur o pe a n
Co ur t o f H um a n
Right s ,
which ha s t he
ca pa cit y
t o
im po s e
it s de cis io ns o n na t io n
s t a t e s ;
o r ce r t a in t r a ns na t io na l co r -
po r a t io ns .
We no w ha v e a who le s e t o f no n-s t a t e
ins t it ut io ns ,
s o m e o f which
ha v e t he
a bilit y
t o m a ke
incr e a s ingly po we r f ul
cla im s in t he na m e o f hum a n
r ight s . My que s t io n is ,
do we
jus t
wr it e t he m o f f a s
no n-po lit ica l
ins t it ut io ns
be ca us e
t he y 'r e
no t de r iv e d f r o m s t a t e s ? Or a r e
t he y a na lo go us
t o
s t a t e s ,
o r
s o m e ho w s t a t e -like
o r ga nis m s ?
H o w do
y o u
e v a lua t e t he m ?
CM: Tha t r e la t e s t o o ur e a r lie r dis cus s io n o f
cit ize ns hip.
A nd he r e I wo uld
m a ke a dis t inct io n be t we e n ce r t a in ins t it ut io ns o f
" co s m o po lit a n de m o cr a cy ,"
which I wo uld be in f a v o r
o f ,
a nd t he ide a o f
" co s m o po lit a n cit ize ns hip,"
which
I a m
a ga ins t .
I do n't t hink t he ide a o f
co s m o po lit a n cit ize ns hip r e a lly
m a ke s
s e ns e . I t hink it is a libe r a l illus io n t ha t
y o u
ca nha v e
cit ize ns hip
wit ho ut
be lo nging
t o a de m o s . The
co s m o po lit a n cit ize n,
if it we r e e v e r
de v e lo pe d,
wo uld
s im ply
be
t he cit ize n wit h
r ight s
t ha t ca nno t be e xe r cis e d
a ny whe r e .
Whe n
t he y
we r e v io -
la t e d,
t his cit ize n
m ight
ha v e t r ibuna ls t o which he co uld
a ppe a l,
but he wo uld
110
Gr e y Ro o m 02
no t ha v e t he
po s s ibilit y
t o e xe r cis e his
r ight
t o
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt .
RD: But
y o u
wo uld
a cce pt
t he ide a o f
co s m o po lit a n de m o cr a cy .
H o w s o ? To be
de m o cr a t ic,
do e s n't a
go v e r nm e nt
ha v e t o de r iv e it s
po we r
f r o m a
pe o ple ?
CM: The ide a o f
co s m o po lit a n
f o r m s o f de m o cr a t ic
go v e r na nce
ne e ds t o be
dis t inguis he d
f r o m
co s m o po lit a n cit ize ns hip.
It m e a ns t ha t
y o u
s t ill ha v e a s o m e -
wha t t r a dit io na l f o r m o f
cit ize ns hip, a lt ho ugh
t he r e is no ne e d t o link t ha t ide a
o f
cit ize ns hip
t o t he ide a o f t he na t io n-s t a t e . Tha t co nne ct io n is
s o m e t hing
I wo uld
wa nt t o cr it icize .
Ye t ,
t o a ba ndo n t he ide a t ha t
cit ize ns hip
ne e ds
ne ce s s a r ily
t o
be linke d t o t he na t io n-s t a t e do e s n't e nt a il
go ing
t o t he o t he r e xt r e m e a nd
be lie v ing
t ha t
cit ize ns hip
ca n t he r e f o r e be co m e
co s m o po lit a n.
One ca n
im a gine
a f o r m o f
de m o s which is no t t he na t io n-s t a t e . A f t e r
a ll,
t he Gr e e k
po lis
wa s no t a na t io n-
s t a t e .
To da y ,
wit h t he f o r m a t io n o f t he
E ur o pe a n
Unio n,
f o r
ins t a nce ,
t he r e is
cle a r ly
a
po s s ibilit y
o f
de v e lo ping
a f o r m o f
cit ize ns hip
t ha t wo uld no t co r r e -
s po nd
t o t he
na t io n-s t a t e ,
but which wo uld ne v e r t he le s s
co r r e s po nd
t o a de m o s .
F o r
m e ,
t his is no t a
co nt r a dict io n,
a nd I t hink it 's
s o m e t hing
t ha t 's ne e de d.
H um a nit y ,
ho we v e r ,
is no t a
de m o s ,
a nd t he de f a ct o
co ns e que nce
o f
co s m o po lit a n
cit ize ns hip
wo uld be
hum a nit y : jus t by
t he f a ct t ha t
y o u
a r e a hum a n
be ing, y o u
a r e a cit ize n.
To da y ,
ho we v e r ,
t he r e do e s ne e d t o be a f o r m o f
cit ize ns hip
linke d t o t r a ns -
f o r m a t io ns in t he de m o s . Be ca us e o f t he
pr o ce s s e s
o f
glo ba liza t io n,
t he r e is a n
im po r t a nt
ne e d f o r f o r m s o f de m o cr a t ic
go v e r na nce
which a r e t r a ns na t io na l o r
co s m o po lit a n.
But t his is no t t he s a m e
t hing
a s a
co s m o po lit a n cit ize ns hip.
Ma y be
it will
ha ppe n,
but t ha t will m e a n t he e nd o f de m o cr a t ic
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt .
So m e t hing im po r t a nt
wo uld ha v e be e n lo s t in t ha t t r a ns it io n t o
co s m o po lit a n
cit ize ns hip,
a nd I do n't t hink it is a
pr o gr e s s
t ha t
we ,
o nt he
Le f t ,
s ho uld be a dv o -
ca t ing
o r
lo o king
t o wa r d.
RD:
Why
co uldn't
co s m o po lit a n cit ize ns hip
be
o r ga nize d a lo ng
t he s a m e line s
a s na t io na l
cit ize ns hip?
Yo u'v e s a id t ha t r a dica l de m o cr a t ic
cit ize ns hip
is ba s e d
o n a dhe r e nce t o ce r t a in
e t hico -po lit ica l
v a lue s ,
s uch a s t he v a lue o f
co nt e s t ing
r e la t io ns o f s ubo r dina t io n.
Why
co uldn't int e r na t io na l
cit ize ns hip
be ba s e d o n
m e m be r s hip
in a n int e r na t io na l
de m o cr a cy
r a t he r t ha n
hum a nit y ?
Is n't t ha t a
po lit ica l ide nt it y
wit h which it is
po s s ible
t o
ide nt if y ?
F o r
y o u,
ide nt if ica t io n wit h
pa r t icula r e t hico -po lit ica l pr inciple s
is t he cr it e r io n o f de m o cr a t ic
cit ize ns hip,
is it no t ?
CM:
Ye s ,
e xce pt
t ha t t he de m o cr a t ic
cit ize ns hip
is
a lwa y s a lle gia nce
t o a de m o s
t ha t is inf o r m e d
by
ce r t a in
e t hico -po lit ica l
v a lue s .
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 111
RD: But
why
co uldn't t he de m o s be int e r na t io na l?
CM: Le t m e
giv e y o u
a n
e xa m ple co nce r ning
H a be r m a s 's
co nce pt io n
o f
" co n-
s t it ut io na l
pa t r io t is m ."
The r e is a
s ignif ica nt
dif f e r e nce be t we e n us . I wa nt t o
r e t a in
t he ide a o f
pa r t icula r it y ,
in t he s e ns e o f a r e la t io n t o a
s pe cif ic
de m o s : F r a nce
o r
Ge r m a ny ,
f o r
e xa m ple ,
o r t he
E ur o pe a n
Unio n,
e t c. I be lie v e t ha t a
po lit ica l
co m -
m unit y
is
a lwa y s
a
co m m unit y
which is o r de r e d
s y m bo lica lly a cco r ding
t o a
ce r -
t a in s e t o f
v a lue s ,
which I ca ll t he
e t hico -po lit ica l pr inciple s
o f a
r e gim e .
A nd f o r
m e
cit ize ns hip
is
a lle gia nce
t o t he
e t hico -po lit ica l pr inciple s
o f a
pa r t icula r
de m o s .
H a be r m a s ,
o n t he
co nt r a r y ,
wa nt s t o
ge t
r id o f a ll t he
pa r t icula r it ie s
in his ide a
o f a
pa t r io t is m
o f t he co ns t it ut io n. A nd t he
co ns t it ut io n,
f o r him o f
co ur s e ,
is a n
e xpr e s s io n
o f univ e r s a l
r ight s .
I do n't be lie v e t ha t t he
pr inciple s
t ha t inf o r m lib-
e r a l
de m o cr a cy
a r e t he
o nly le git im a t e
o ne s . Libe r a l
de m o cr a cy
is o ne f o r m o f
de m o cr a cy ,
but t he r e a r e o t he r f o r m s . I wo uld no t
a r gue
in f a v o r o f t he univ e r -
s a liza t io n o f libe r a l
de m o cr a cy t hr o ugho ut
t he wo r ld.
H a be r m a s , ho we v e r ,
wo uld
wa nt us t o be lie v e t ha t t he r e is o ne s e t o f
e t hico -po lit ica l pr inciple s
a nd a ll t he
wo r ld s ho uld be
o r ga nize d upo n
t he m ,
a nd t his is a ls o a nide a t ha t is
im plicit
in
co s m o po lit a n cit ize ns hip:
t ha t t he r e is o ne s e t o f univ e r s a l v a lue s which s ho uld
be
a cce pt e d by
a ll r a t io na l o r r e a s o na ble cit ize ns .
H o we v e r ,
I be lie v e
v e r y
m uch
t ha t t he wo r ld-a nd he r e
a ga in
I'm
dr a wing
o n t he ide a s o f Schm it t -is a
" plur i-
v e r s e " in t he s e ns e t ha t t he r e a r e
dif f e r e nt ly
de t e r m ine d
po lit ica l
co m m unit ie s .
We s ho uld
a cce pt
t he
po s s ibilit y
o f
le git im a t e
f o r m s o f
go v e r nm e nt
which a r e no t
ide nt ica l t o o ur
o wn,
i.e . libe r a l
de m o cr a cy .
Mo r e o v e r ,
t his
a lle gia nce
t o t he
pr inciple s
o f t he
pa r t icula r
de m o s is no t
pur e ly
int e lle ct ua l. It 's no t
m e r e ly
a
que s t io n,
a s it t e nds t o be in
H a be r m a s ,
o f
r e co g-
nizing
t ha t t he r e a r e ce r t a in
pr inciple s
which
e v e r y
r a t io na l
be ing
s ho uld
a cce pt .
The r e is
a lwa y s
a ne le m e nt o f
a f f e ct ,
a m o biliza t io n o f a f f e ct o r a m o biliza t io n o f
pa s s io ns .
It 's a r e a l ide nt if ica t io n in t he s e ns e t ha t o ne 's
ide nt it y
is
t r uly
a t s t a ke
in t he ide a o f
be ing
de m o cr a t ic
cit ize ns ,
a nd t ha t is
o nly po s s ible t hr o ugh
s o m e
e le m e nt o f
pa r t icula r it y .
Tha t 's
why
I be lie v e t ha t it 's
v e r y da nge r o us
f o r t he Le f t
t o
r e je ct pa t r io t is m .
I wa nt t o de f e nd s o m e kind o f
le f t -wing pa t r io t is m ,
s o m e link
wit h t he t r a dit io n o f wha t it is f o r a Ge r m a nt o be
Ge r m a n,
o r f o r a F r e nch
pe r s o n
t o be F r e nch. This do e s no t
ne ce s s a r ily
e v e n ha v e t o be
phr a s e d
a s
be ing
a m e m -
be r o f a na t io n-s t a t e e it he r . One
pr o po s a l
t ha t I f ind
e xt r e m e ly int e r e s t ing
is t he o ne
m a de
r e ce nt ly by
Ma s s im o
Ca ccia r i,
t he
philo s o phe r
a nd f o r m e r
m a y o r
o f
Ve nice ,
who ha s
r e ce nt ly
be e n
a r guing
f o r wha t he ca lls a ne w f o r m o f f e de r a lis m .
(H e r e
in
A m e r ica , F e de r a lis m m e a ns
pr e cis e ly
t he
o ppo s it e
o f wha t Ca ccia r i m e a ns .
112
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
Inde e d,
a cco r ding
t o his
unde r s t a nding,
t he r e a l f e de r a lis t s in A m e r ica we r e t he
a nt i-F e de r a lis t s .)
Ca ccia r i is
a dv o ca t ing
a f e de r a lis m t ha t wo uld
o pe r a t e
no t f r o m
t he
t o p
do wn,
but f r o m t he bo t t o m
up.
H e is
a t t e m pt ing
t o t hink o f t he
wa y
in
which
E ur o pe
co uld
r e o r ga nize
it s e lf o nt he ba s is o f lo ca lit ie s o r
r e gio ns .
To r e a l-
ize wha t he 's
t r y ing
t o
do ,
y o u
m us t r e a lize t ha t he is
f ight ing
wit h t he
Le ga
No r d.
Like
m e ,
he be lie v e s t ha t we ca nno t le a v e s uch
t o pics
t o t he
Right .
We ne e d t o int e r -
v e ne o n
que s t io ns
o f
r e gio na l ide nt it y .
Giv e n t he cur r e nt cr is is o f t he
na t io n-s t a t e ,
we ca n't
jus t go
o n
t hinking
a bo ut
cit ize ns hip
in t he s a m e
wa y .
We ne e d t o r e t hink
it ,
no t
o nly t hr o ugh
s o m e
t y pe s
o f de m o cr a t ic
go v e r nm e nt a l a ge ncie s
a t t r a ns na t io na l o r m ult ina t io na l
le v e ls ,
but
a ls o
by t r y ing
t o r e co v e r t he
m e a ning
o f
de m o cr a cy
in t e r m s o f
r e gio na l
lo ca li-
t ie s ,
e v e n o ne s no t
ne ce s s a r ily
f o r m e d-a nd t his is wha t I f ind
int e r e s t ing
in his
pr o po s a l-o n
t he ba s is o f
a ct ua lly
e s t a blis he d na t io na l f r o nt ie r s . F o r
ins t a nce ,
a s
Ca ccia r i
s a y s ,
t he r e a r e a lo t o f co m m o n cult ur a l a nd e co no m ic
s pa ce s
be t we e n
t he s o ut h o f F r a nce a nd
It a ly .
The s a m e is t r ue be t we e n F r a nce a nd
Spa in
in a
dif f e r e nt
s e ns e ,
a s we ll a s be t we e n
pa r t s
o f A us t r ia a nd
It a ly .
So o ne ca nt hink o f
wha t s uch a
r e co m po s it io n
o f t he
po lit ica l m a p
wo uld lo o k like . We ca n
e v e n,
Ca ccia r i
s a y s ,
t hink in ce r t a in cir cum s t a nce s o f cit ie s
be co m ing
s o m e kind o f
po lis a ga in.
Wha t he is
pr o po s ing
is a n
unde r s t a nding
o f a
m ult iplicit y
o f
de m o i,
a nd t o r e t hink a f o r m o f
cit ize ns hip
t ha t wo uld be o n a m uch m o r e lo ca l o r
r e gio na l
le v e l. H e
s a y s ,
a nd I t hink he 's
r ight ,
t ha t t he r e wo uld be m uch m o r e o f
a
po s s ibilit y
f o r
pe o ple
t o e xe r cis e t he ir
r ight s
o f
cit ize ns hip
if it wa s unde r s t o o d
in t e r m s o f s uch s m a lle r f o r m s o f de m o i.
I a ls o f ind it
v e r y int e r e s t ing
t ha t he
o ppo s e s -be ca us e
he s e e s t he
da nge r v e r y
cle a r ly
in t he kind o f f e de r a lis m
cur r e nt ly pr o po s e d by
t he
Le ga
No r d o r t he
F le m is h Vlo a m s e Blo ck a nd o t he r s -t ha t f e de r a lis m which is
pr im a r ily
o f t he r ich
a ga ins t
t he
po o r ,
o f t he r ich who do n't wa nt t o
go
o n wit h t he bur de n o f s ubs i-
dizing
t he
po o r .
Ca ccia r i's
t y pe
o f f e de r a lis m
put s
t his int o
que s t io n,
be ca us e it
is no t a f e de r a lis m o f
s e pa r a t io n,
but o ne o f
int e r de pe nde nce
t ha t
r e co gnize s
t ha t
a ll t ho s e
r e gio ns
ca n
o nly
f ind t he ir
ide nt it y
in r e la t io n t o o t he r s . A f e de r a lis m
no t o f
s e pa r a t io n
f r o m but a f e de r a lis m o f
e s t a blis hing
links
a m o ng m a ny
o t he r
s m a lle r de m o i:
t his ,
in
m y
v ie w,
is
cle a r ly
t he dir e ct io n in which we s ho uld be
t hinking
if we wa nt t o r e de f ine t he ide a o f
cit ize ns hip,
a nd no t in t e r m s o f
a ny
glo ba l
f o r m o f
cit ize ns hip.
BWJ:
Tha t
cle a r ly
f a lls int o
y o ur t hinking
a bo ut
" a go nis m "
v e r s us
" a nt a go -
nis m ."
A m o ng
t he s e lo ca l
r e gio ns ,
o r
de m o i,
t he r e is a nus /t he m
dis t inct io n,
but
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 113
no t
ne ce s s a r ily
a
f r ie nd/e ne m y
dis t inct io n. But
he r e ,
a s in
y o ur
o t he r
wo r k,
y o u
s e e m t o wa nt t o
pr o po s e s o m e t hing
t ha t I do n't kno w t ha t I
a ct ua lly
f ind in
Schm it t ,
a n
a go nis m
t ha t is no t t he Schm it t ia n
a nt a go nis m
be t we e n f r ie nd a nd
e ne m y .
CM:
Ye s ,
wha t I
a ct ua lly s a y
is t ha t it is
pr e cis e ly
no t f o und in Schm it t . It is
be ca us e he is no t a ble t o t hink in t e r m s o f
a go nis m
t ha t he is
pr e v e nt e d
f r o m
t hinking
o f t he
po s s ibilit y
o f a
plur a lis t de m o cr a cy .
BWJ:
So Ca ccia r i
co m ple m e nt s
t ha t
a s pe ct
o f
y o ur
o wn
t hinking.
CM:
Ye s ,
a bs o lut e ly ,
a nd a t a ce r t a in
po int ,
whe n he r e f e r s t o t he s it ua t io n in
Yugo s la v ia ,
he s e e s
cle a r ly
t ha t if we do n't m o v e in t ha t dir e ct io n we a r e
go ing
t o s e e m o r e a nd m o r e
a nt a go nis t ic
co nf lict o f t he " us " a nd t he " t he m " in t e r m s
o f f r ie nd a nd
e ne m y .
This is
go ing
t o be o ne o f t he
co ns e que nce s
o f
glo ba liza t io n.
While he do e s n't us e t he t e r m
" a go nis m ,"
Ca ccia r i's ide a o f f e de r a lis m
wo uld,
in
m y
v ie w,
cr e a t e t he
po s s ibilit y
o f
pr e cis e ly
s uch a n
a go nis t ic t y pe
o f
r e la t io ns hip
be t we e n dif f e r e nt lo ca lit ie s . Wha t is
int e r e s t ing
int his ca s e is t ha t he f o r e s e e s t he
po s s ibilit y
o f a
m ult iplicit y
o f ins t it ut io ns : o f t he e t hnic
kind,
pe r ha ps ,
but a ls o
a r o und
cit ie s ,
o r a r o und cult ur a l v a lue s . The r e is no a
pr io r i giv e n
t o
a ny pa r t ic-
ula r
gr o uping
o t he r t ha n t ha t
t he y
a r e co m m unit ie s t ha t f e e l t ha t
t he y 'v e go t
e no ugh
o f a co m m o n
de s t iny
t o wa nt t o ha v e s o m e f o r m o f
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt .
BWJ:
Is it a
ne ce s s it y
o f
de f ining
a de m o s t ha t it be
t e r r it o r ia lly
ba s e d?
CM:
No ,
it 's no t a
ne ce s s it y .
A no t he r
t hing
t ha t I'm int e r e s t e d in a t t he
m o m e nt ,
a lt ho ugh
I'm no t
quit e
s ur e whe t he r o r no t it wo uld be
co m pa t ible
wit h Ca ccia r i's
m o de l a nd I'd ne e d t o e xa m ine it in m o r e
de t a il,
is t he
pr o po s a l
m a de
by
Ot t o
Ba ue r a nd Ca r l Re nne r a t t he
be ginning
o f t his
ce nt ur y
t o
r e o r ga nize
t he A us t r o -
H unga r ia n E m pir e
in s uch a
wa y
a s t o a llo w f o r m o r e
a ut o no m y
f o r t he dif f e r e nt
gr o ups
wit hin it .
The y
we r e
t r y ing
t o t hink o f
de m o cr a cy
in
wa y s
t ha t wo uld
giv e
r ight s
t o
gr o ups
t ha t we r e no t
t e r r it o r ia lly
ba s e d. Wha t 's
int e r e s t ing
in t he ir
pr o po s a l
is t ha t
t he y
we r e
t r y ing
t o s e e ho w t o
r e co gnize
t he
s pe cif icit y
o f t he dif -
f e r e nt cult ur a l
gr o ups
f o und in t he
A us t r o -H unga r ia n E m pir e
t ha t we r e n't t e r r i-
t o r ia lly co nt iguo us .
TK: The
Yugo s la v ia pr o ble m , e xa ct ly .
CM: Ye s .
BWJ:
Ca nI a s k a
que s t io n a ga in
a bo ut t he
r e la t io ns hip
t o
t e r r it o r y ,
t o a ct ua l
t e r r it o r y ?
Co uld o ne v ie w t he
r e la t io ns hip
t o
s pa ce
a s
be ing
a s o r t o f s e dim e nt
o f a his t o r ica l
r e la t io ns hip
a nd
t he r e by
dis a r t icula t e s o m e wha t t he
r e la t io ns hip
t o
phy s ica l
lo ca t io n?
CM: To a ce r t a in
e xt e nt ,
I wo uld
s a y , y e s .
But
o nly
t o a ce r t a in e xt e nt . Be ca us e ,
114
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
f o r
ins t a nce ,
in t he co nt e xt o f a
la r ge r
de m o s like t he
E ur o pe a n Co m m unit y ,
o ne
m ight
wa nt t o cr e a t e a f o r um f o r a ne xe r cis e o f
r ight s
t ha t a r e no t linke d t o
pla ce .
But wha t we 'r e
r e a lly dis cus s ing
he r e is a
que s t io n
o f t he de m o cr a t ic
r ight s
o f
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt .
A nd it is
a lwa y s
in t he co nt e xt o f a de m o s t ha t o ne is
go ing
t o
v o t e a nd de cide ho w o ne wa nt s t o
o r ga nize
t he
po lit ica l co m m unit y :
wha t kind
o f
po lit ica l
cho ice s we a r e
go ing
t o m a ke in t e r m s o f
e duca t io n,
o f
e m plo y m e nt ,
e t c. This is wha t is a t s t a ke in de m o cr a t ic
s e lf -go v e r nm e nt .
So ,
a t
le a s t ,
we ne e d
t o be co ns ide r e d a m e m be r o f t he
co m m unit y .
BWJ:
Co uldn't o ne t he n r e v e r s e t ha t a nd t hink o f a m o de l
by
which o ne co uld
jo in
a
co m m unit y
t ha t o ne wa s n't
phy s ica lly pr o xim a t e
t o ?
CM:
Ye s ,
I do n't s e e
why
no t if we a r e
t a lking
in
pr inciple .
But I be lie v e
pe o ple
wa nt t o
pa r t icipa t e
in t he
go v e r nm e nt
o f t he
pla ce
whe r e
t he y
liv e a nd t o a f f e ct
t ha t . I kno w t he dir e ct io n o f m uch r a dica l
t hinking
no w is
a ga ins t t e r r it o r ia lit y ,
but I f ind it ha r d t o s e e t ha t a s a r e a l
pr o gr e s s .
I t hink t ha t t he ba s ic ce nt r a l is s ue s
will s t ill be de cide d in t e r m s o f t he
t e r r it o r y .
11 111
BWJ:
I'm a ls o int e r e s t e d in t he r o le
pla y e d by ca pit a lis m
in t he r a dica l de m o c-
r a t ic
pr o je ct
a nd it s t he o r iza t io n. So m e t im e s it s e e m s t o be a
ne ce s s a r y pr e co n-
dit io n: t he
v e r y po s s ibilit y
o f a r a dica l
de m o cr a cy
de s cr ibe d a s
a r is ing
o n t he
ba s is o f t he dis lo ca t io ns
pr o duce d by
a dv a nce d o r -a s
y o u
ca ll it a t o ne
po int
in
H e ge m o ny
a nd So cia lis t
St r a t e gy -" dis o r ga nize d" ca pit a lis m .10
But
s o m e t im e s ,
a s in
y o ur
m o r e r e ce nt e f f o r t s t o dis a r t icula t e
ca pit a lis m
f r o m t he
philo s o phy
o f
libe r a lis m ,
it s e e m s
co nt inge nt : m e r e ly
o ne o f t he
po s s ible
s it e s o f
o ppr e s s io n
a nd
a nt a go nis m .
Co uld
y o u
e la bo r a t e a bit o n t he r o le
pla y e d by ca pit a lis m ?
CM: In
H e ge m o ny ,
o ne o f o ur m a in a im s wa s t o cr it icize t he t r a dit io na l
Ma r xis t v ie w t ha t t he
de v e lo pm e nt
o f
ca pit a lis m
wa s
r e s po ns ible
f o r
e v e r y t hing.
We we r e
a r guing
t ha t it is r a t he r o n a cco unt o f t he
pr e gna ncy
o f t he de m o cr a t ic
im a gina r y
a nd t he dis co ur s e o f
de m o cr a cy
t ha t a s e t o f
a nt a go nis m s
ca n
e m e r ge .
The ba s is f o r t ho s e
a nt a go nis m s
is
giv e n by
t he f o r m s o f
o ppr e s s io n,
which a r e
linke d t o t he
de v e lo pm e nt
o f
ca pit a lis m -f o r
ins t a nce ,
t o t he
incr e a s ing
co m -
m o dif ica t io n o f s o cia l lif e -but
t he y
ca n
o nly e m e r ge
a s
a nt a go nis m s
be ca us e o f
t he de m o cr a t ic dis co ur s e which a llo ws s uch f o r m s o f s ubo r dina t io n t o be co n-
ce iv e d a s f o r m s o f
o ppr e s s io n.
It m us t be r e m e m be r e d t ha t whe n we we r e wr it -
ing H e ge m o ny ,
it wa s s t ill a m o m e nt whe n t he t r a dit io na l Ma r xis t dis co ur s e wa s
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 115
v e r y im po r t a nt .
We ca n't
r e a lly im a gine
it
a ny m o r e ,
but it wa s a m o m e nt whe n
t he
ce nt r a lit y
o f t he
wo r king
cla s s wa s
la r ge ly
no t
put
int o
que s t io n,
whe n
m a ny
pe o ple
we r e
dis m is s ing
t he " ne w s o cia l m o v e m e nt s " a s
be ing pe t it bo ur ge o is ,
a nd t he like . The
v e r y pr o je ct
o f a r a dica l
de m o cr a cy
wa s t o
t r y
t o t a ke a cco unt
o f s uch ne w f o r m s o f
a nt a go nis m s ,
t o r e co ns ide r a
le f t -wing pr o je ct
t ha t co uld no
lo nge r
be f o r m ula t e d
e xclus iv e ly
in t e r m s o f cla s s co nt r a dict io ns . This wa s no t
t o
s a y
t ha t a ll t ho s e ne w f o r m s o f
a nt a go nis m
ha d
no t hing
t o do wit h
ca pit a lis m .
Ins t e a d,
we we r e
ins is t ing
t ha t we co uld no t
e xpla in
t he f a ct t ha t
t he y e m e r ge d
a s
a nt a go nis m s s im ply
a s a
pr o duct
o f e co no m ic
de v e lo pm e nt s .
We ne e de d t o
t a ke m uch m o r e
s e r io us ly
t he
im po r t a nce
o f t he de m o cr a t ic dis co ur s e in
a llo wing
s uch f o r m s o f s ubo r dina t io n t o be
cha lle nge d.
A s we s t a t e d in o ur
int r o duct io n,
o ur
po s it io n
wa s
po s t -Ma r xis t ,
but it wa s a ls o
po s t -Ma r xis t .
Ma r xis m wa s no t
s o m e t hing
t ha t we wa nt e d t o a ba ndo n
co m ple t e ly . To da y ,
t he
pr o ce s s
o f co m -
m o dif ica t io n ha s
ce r t a inly
r e a che d a ne w
le v e l,
but I do n't s e e
why
we s ho uld
r e co ns ide r t ha t
a s pe ct
o f t he
pr o je ct
o f a r a dica l a nd
plur a l de m o cr a cy .
In
H e ge m o ny ,
we we r e a ls o
cr it icizing
t he t r a dit io na l Ma r xis t ide a t ha t o ne
ne e de d t o br e a k
co m ple t e ly
wit h t he libe r a l de m o cr a t ic
r e gim e .
We ins is t e d o n
t he ne e d t o a ba ndo n t he t r a dit io na l ide a o f t he r e v o lut io n in t he s e ns e o f a co m -
ple t e
br e a k.
Ins t e a d,
we we r e
pr o po s ing
wha t co uld be s e e n a s a nim m a ne nt cr i-
t ique
o f libe r a l
de m o cr a cy ,
unde r s t o o d a s a
po lit ica l r e gim e
a nd no t
ne ce s s a r ily
a s a
co m po ne nt
o f
ca pit a lis m .
Tha t wa s
s o m e t hing
t ha t I
de v e lo pe d
la t e r in
Dim e ns io ns
o f
Ra dica l
De m o cr a cy ,
whe r e I ins is t e d t ha t t he
pr o ble m
o f a r a dica l
de m o cr a cy
ha d t o be unde r s t o o d in t e r m s o f a
r a dica l,
libe r a l
de m o cr a cy .
Ye t
a lr e a dy ,
f r o m t he m o m e nt o f
H e ge m o ny ,
we co ns ide r e d t ha t ins ide t he libe r a l
de m o cr a t ic
t r a dit io n,
unde r s t o o d a s a
r e gim e
who s e
e t hico -po lit ica l pr inciple s
we r e
libe r t y
a nd
e qua lit y
f o r
a ll,
we r e a ll t he
s y m bo lic
r e s o ur ce s t ha t we ne e de d
t o
f ight
f o r a
le f t -wing pr o je ct
t ha t ha d o t he r wis e be e n
co m ple t e ly
de f ine d
by
s o cia lis m . I t hink t ha t t his ha s
cle a r ly
be e n
pr o v e nr ight ,
o r ,
a t
le a s t ,
no w it wo uld
be
ge ne r a lly a cce pt e d.
Wha t ha s be co m e dis cr e dit e d is
pr e cis e ly
t he kind o f le f t -
wing pr o je ct
t ha t we we r e
f ight ing a ga ins t
a t t he
t im e ,
a So v ie t o r a co m m unis t
kind o f s o lut io n.
The r e a r e s o m e ne w r he t o r ics o f
a nt i-ca pit a lis m ,
f o und
t o da y ,
f o r
ins t a nce ,
in
t he r e ce nt wo r k o f
Sla v o j
Zize k. I f ind
t he m , ho we v e r ,
a lit t le
ho llo w,
a nd I'm no t
quit e
s ur e wha t he
r e a lly
int e nds . If we ha d t o r e wr it e
H e ge m o ny
a nd So cia lis t
St r a t e gy
no w,
t he o ne
po int
t ha t I wo uld
pr o ba bly
t r a ns f o r m is t he
wa y
we
pr e -
s e nt e d t he r a dica l de m o cr a t ic
pr o je ct
in it s r e la t io n wit h
ca pit a lis m .
The r a dica l
116
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
de m o cr a t ic
pr o je ct de f init e ly
ha s a n
a nt i-ca pit a lis t
dim e ns io n, but I'm no t
quit e
s ur e wha t it wo uld m e a n
t o da y
t o
f ight a ga ins t ca pit a lis m
a s a unif ie d
s y s t e m
t ha t
co uld be
r e pla ce d by
a
co m ple t e ly
dif f e r e nt o ne .
BWJ:
Do e s t ha t m e a n t ha t
ca pit a lis m ,
a s
s uch,
is
uns t o ppa ble ?
Tha t it ha s
be co m e ,
in
e f f e ct ,
a f o r ce o f na t ur e ?
CM: I do n't t hink t ha t
ca pit a lis m
is
uns t o ppa ble ,
but a t t he m o m e nt wha t we
ca nno t
cle a r ly e nv is a ge
is wha t a r a dica l a lt e r na t iv e t o
ca pit a lis m
wo uld be .
Wha t we ca n
e nv is a ge ,
ho we v e r ,
a nd wha t I t hink we
s ho uld,
is ho w we ca n
pur -
s ue o r
pr o duce
a s e r ie s o f
f ight s a ga ins t
ce r t a in f o r m s o f
ca pit a lis m ,
o r ha v e s o m e
s o r t o f
r e gula t io n
o f
ca pit a lis m .
In
m y
v ie w,
t he m o s t
int e r e s t ing de v e lo pm e nt
wit hin
a nt i-ca pit a lis t
m o v e m e nt s co m e s f r o m t ho s e f o r m s o f r e s is t a nce
a ga ins t
t he
pr o ce s s e s
o f
glo ba liza t io n. The y 'r e why
I wo uld no t be t o o
pe s s im is t ic
in t he
m a nne r o f t he F r a nkf ur t Scho o l wit h
r e s pe ct
t o t he
po s s ibilit ie s
f o r
cha nge .
It 's
t r ue ,
o f
co ur s e ,
t ha t t he r e 's be e n a n incr e dible co m m o dif ica t io n o f
s o cie t y .
In a
s e ns e ,
ca pit a lis m
ha s a lm o s t
m a na ge d
t o t r a ns f o r m us
e nt ir e ly
int o co ns um e r s .
But ,
a t t he s a m e
t im e ,
we 'r e
a lr e a dy s e e ing
t he
de v e lo pm e nt
o f
s t r uggle s a ga ins t
t ha t . The f a ct t ha t we 'v e be co m e t r a ns f o r m e d int o co ns um e r s do e s n't m e a n t ha t
we 'r e
m e r e ly go ing
t o
a cce pt
a ll
ca pit a lis t
r e la t io ns . To be co m e a co ns um e r do e s
no t m e a n t ha t
y o u
be co m e a
pa s s iv e s ubje ct ;
t he r e a r e
m a ny
f o r m s in
which,
a s
co ns um e r s ,
y o u
ca n
f ight a ga ins t ca pit a lis m .
Yo ur
ide nt it y
be co m e s t he lo cus o f
a n
a nt a go nis m ,
a nd I s e e a lo t o f
po t e nt ia l
f o r
r e a lly im po r t a nt a nt i-ca pit a lis t
r e s is t a nce s f r o m wit hin t he
v e r y ide nt it y
o f t he co ns um e r .
BWJ:
Ont he o ne
ha nd,
ca pit a lis m
ca n be s e e n a s
y o u
s e e m t o be
de s cr ibing
it ,
a s t he
gr e a t -t o
us e a De le uzia n
t e r m -de t e r r it o r ia lizing
f o r ce ,
a f o r ce t ha t
wo uld ca us e t he dis lo ca t io ns which ca n t he n be co m e s it e s o f
a nt a go nis m .
Pe r ha ps
m o r e
da nge r o us
o r ha r de r t o
f ight ,
ho we v e r ,
is t ha t f o r ce o f ine v it a ble
r e -t e r r it o r ia liza t io n o r ne ut r a liza t io n t ha t
ha ppe ns
a s a
r e s ult ,
o nce
a ga in,
o f
ca pit a lis m .
A s a
f o r ce ,
t he r e 's t his
gr e a t
s t a biliza t io n t ha t
ca pit a lis m
ca n m o bi-
lize t o t r a ns f o r m
a ny cr it ique
int o a f o r m o f
co m m o dit y
t ha t
t he r e by
ne ut r a lize s
t ha t
cr it ique .
Int ha t
s e ns e ,
I'm no t s o s ur e t ha t it is
po s s ible
f o r a n
a nt a go nis m
ba s e d
upo n
co m m o dif ica t io n t o
ge t be y o nd s im ply r e co m m o dif y ing
t ha t
a nt a g-
o nis m a s
s o m e t hing
e ls e . It 's a
ca pa cit y
t o ne ut r a lize
by pa cka ging.
CM: To ne ut r a lize ...
but ,
I wo uld
s a y ,
no t
de f init iv e ly
ne ut r a lize . To
t e m po r a r -
ily
ne ut r a lize ,
pe r ha ps ,
but t he s e ne ut r a liza t io ns ca n t he n
giv e
r is e t o a no t he r
s t r uggle .
Whe nI
s a y " a nt i-ca pit a lis t s t r uggle s ,"
I
a lwa y s put
it int he
plur a l,
be ca us e
I do n't
be lie v e ,
pr e cis e ly ,
in t he
a nt i-ca pit a lis t s t r uggle .
It 's
a lwa y s a nt i-ca pit a lis t
Pa ge
118: No v e m be r
30,
1999:
5t h a nd
Unio n,
2000.
Pho t o :
?
A na m a r ia
Tur le a ,
2000.
Pa ge
119: Vide o s t ills f r o m
Sho wdo wn inSe a t t le : F iv e
Da y s
Tha t Sho o k t he WTO.
Inde pe nde nt
Me dia Ce nt e r .
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 117
s t r uggle s ,
o r a
s t r uggle
wit h a n
a nt i-ca pit a lis t
dim e ns io n. In o r de r no t t o e s s e n-
t ia lize t his
t hing, ca pit a lis m ,
we ne e d t o r e f o r m ula t e it . It 's m uch m o r e
co m ple x.
Obv io us ly
t he r e 's
a lwa y s
t he
po s s ibilit y
t ha t
a ny
kind o f de m a nd is
go ing
t o
be ne ut r a lize d o r
r e cupe r a t e d,
but t ha t 's a co ns t a nt o f t he
he ge m o nic s t r uggle .
Ca pit a lis t
ins t it ut io ns
t r y
t o m a int a in t he ir
he ge m o ny by ne ut r a lizing, by
a t t e m pt ing
t o
ne ut r a lize ,
t ho s e
de m a nds ,
but we ca n't t a ke it f o r
gr a nt e d
t ha t t his
will
a lwa y s
be
e f f e ct iv e ,
o r t ha t s uch a ne ut r a liza t io n will no t in
m a ny
ca s e s
inf lue nce r e la t io ns o f f o r ce s .
Thr o ugh
t he a ct o f
ne ut r a liza t io n,
ca pit a lis t
ins t it u-
t io ns a r e t r a ns f o r m e d. It is no t t he s a m e be a s t t ha t e a t s
us ;
it is
t r a ns f o r m e d, a nd,
a lt ho ugh
it
m ight
be co m e
wo r s e ,
it
m ight
a ls o be co m e be t t e r . It 's
r e a lly
a wa r o f
po s it io n
in Gr a m s ci's
unde r s t a nding.
I t hink t ha t 's
e xa ct ly
ho w we m us t unde r -
s t a nd it : a wa r o f
po s it io n
in which we a dv a nce a nd in which t he r e will
a lwa y s
be
po s s ibilit ie s
o f r e s is t a nce . In
f a ct ,
I do n't kno w wha t
y o u
t hink a bo ut t he
r e ce nt de m o ns t r a t io ns in Se a t t le a nd
Wa s hingt o n,
D.C.,
but I t hink t ha t t he s e
e v e nt s a r e
im po r t a nt a lt ho ugh,
o f
co ur s e ,
v e r y
a m biv a le nt ;
t he r e a r e
m a ny t y pe s
o f
pe o ple
t he r e -but t he s e a r e
de v e lo pm e nt s
t ha t s ho w
t ha t ,
co nt r a r y
t o wha t we
co uld ha v e be lie v e d f iv e
y e a r s a go
e v e n,
whe n
ca pit a lis t he ge m o ny
wa s
ne a r ly
unque s t io ne d,
t he r e a r e
po s s ibilit ie s
o f r e s is t a nce .
BWJ:
A ct ua lly ,
wha t I
t ho ught
wa s t ha t a ll t ho s e a s s o cia t e d
gr o ups
r e s e m ble d
a cha in o f
e quiv a le nce s
in
pr e cis e ly
t he s e ns e t ha t
y o u
ha d s e t it
up
in
H e ge m o ny
a nd So cia lis t
St r a t e gy ...
CM: It 's
im po r t a nt
t o be a ble t o cr e a t e s uch a cha in o f
e quiv a le nce .
Ino r de r t o
ha v e a r a dica l
m o v e m e nt ,
y o u
ne e d t o de f ine a n
a dv e r s a r y
o r a n
e ne m y .
A nd t ha t
is wha t wa s de f ine d in Se a t t le a nd in
Wa s hingt o n
a nd,
in a dif f e r e nt
s e ns e ,
in t he
m o v e m e nt he a de d
by
Jo s e
Bo v e in F r a nce . So a ne w f o r m o f
po lit ics
is
be ginning
t o
e m e r ge
be ca us e t he r e is a n
e ne m y
which is de f ine d. I f ind it
r e a lly int e r e s t ing,
a nd I s e e a
big
dif f e r e nce be t we e n t ha t kind o f
pr o je ct
a nd
pe o ple s a y ing,
le t 's
t r y
t o e s t a blis h a
co s m o po lit a n cit ize ns hip,
o r le t 's
t r y
t o e s t a blis h a
co s m o po lit a n
118
Gr e y Ro o m 02
Mo uf f e
| " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n 119
I
f o r m o f
go v e r nm e nt .
Such
a t t e m pt s
do no t ha v e a de f init io n o f a n
e ne m y . The y 'r e
a ne xt e ns io n o f t he libe r a l m o de l o f
go v e r nm e nt s ,
which o f co ur s e
m ight
be
ne e de d,
but I do n't s e e
a ny t hing v e r y
r a dica l a bo ut t ha t .
TK: But o ne
wa y
o f
int e r pr e t ing
t he
pr o t e s t s
in Se a t t le a nd
Wa s hingt o n
is
pr e cis e ly
in t he dir e ct io n o f s uch
co s m o po lit a n
f o r m s o f
go v e r nm e nt :
a s t he
de m a nd t ha t
r e pr e s e nt a t iv e s
o f t r a ns na t io na l civ il
s o cie t y
ha v e a v o ice o r be co m e
t he lo cus o r r e f e r e nce
po int
o f
a cco unt a bilit y
f o r t he t r a ns na t io na l f ina ncia l
ins t it ut io ns . The r e 's a
wa y
in which t he
pr o t e s t e r s
in Se a t t le a nd
Wa s hingt o n
we r e
s a y ing:
" t he r e a r e
po we r s
e xe r cis e d a t a t r a ns na t io na l le v e l
t hr o ugh
t he s e
ins t it ut io ns ,
be y o nd
t he
o r dina r y
na t io na l ins t it ut io ns o f de m o cr a t ic a cco unt -
a bilit y .
A nd
t he y
ne e d t o be m a de
a cco unt a ble ,
no t t o t his o r t ha t
go v e r nm e nt ,
but t o
s o m e t hing
e ls e : t o t he
pe o ple ,
but no t t o t he
pe o ple
o f t his o r t ha t s t a t e ."
Yo u'r e
r ight , t ho ugh,
it 's a r t icula t e d
a nt a go nis t ica lly ,
which is wha t
giv e s
it it s
po lit ica l
f o r ce .
CM: I'v e s e e n s o m e
pe o ple giv ing pr e cis e ly
t he
int e r pr e t a t io n y o u
m e nt io n,
but f o r m e t ha t 's no t t he m o s t
im po r t a nt po t e nt ia l
o f t ho s e m o v e m e nt s which ha v e
t he
po lit ica l po t e nt ia l
o f
de f ining
t he f r ie nd a nd t he
e ne m y . Cle a r ly
in t he ca s e o f
Jo s e Bo v e ,
t he y 'r e de f ining
t he m s e lv e s in
o ppo s it io n
t o t he
a gr ibus ine s s
in F r a nce .
The r e is a
s t r o ng a nt a go nis m
a t
wo r k,
a nd I s e e a r e a l r a dica l
po t e nt ia l
in t his .
BWJ:
Did
y o u s a y
be f o r e t ha t
y o u
wo uld
a ct ua lly
r e wr it e
H e ge m o ny
a nd
So cia lis t
St r a t e gy
t o
pull
it f ur t he r o ut o f t he Ma r xis t
le ga cy ,
be ca us e it 's
pe r ha ps
no
lo nge r
a s a liv e a s it wa s in 1985?
CM: I didn't m e a nt o
s a y
t ha t I wo uld t a ke it f ur t he r o ut o f t he Ma r xis t t r a dit io n.
I m e a nt I wo uld us e a dif f e r e nt
v o ca bula r y
wit h
r e s pe ct
t o
a nt i-ca pit a lis m .
I'm no t
s a y ing
we we r e t o o Ma r xis t
t he r e ,
I'm
s a y ing
t ha t a t t ha t
po int
we s t ill us e d a n
e s s e nt ia lis t
v o ca bula r y
wit h
r e s pe ct
t o
ca pit a lis m .
We ne v e r
put
int o
que s t io n
t he
im po r t a nce
o f t he e co no m ic
a na ly s is
o f Ma r xis m .
Tha t is
s o m e t hing
t ha t is s t ill
v e r y
r e le v a nt ,
a nd I do ha v e
s y m pa t hie s
f o r t he
pe o -
ple
t ha t a r e
s a y ing
t ha t t he Le f t ha s t hr o wn t he
ba by
o ut wit h t he ba t hwa t e r .
Since t he
co lla ps e
o f So v ie t
Co m m unis m ,
we 'v e be e n le f t wit h a s it ua t io n inwhich
y o u
ca nno t
s pe a k
o f t he
e co no m y a ny m o r e
wit ho ut a
cha r ge
o f
be ing
a n unr e -
co ns t r uct e d Ma r xis t . We 'v e be e n
ge t t ing
t o o f a r f r o m Ma r x. We ne e d t o r e int r o duce
t ho s e dim e ns io ns o f
t he
e co no m y
s ince .
M
we ca n't , o bv io us ly ,
unde r s t a nd t he
phe - l
120
no m e no n o f
glo ba liza t io n inde pe nde nt ly
f r o m it . Whe n I s e e , f o r ins t a nce , t he
kinds o f
t hings
which a r e wr it t e n
by
t he t he o r is t s o f t he Thir d
Wa y
... it 's
t r uly
unbe lie v a ble . Tho s e
pe o ple
ha v e
a bs o lut e ly
no
unde r s t a nding
o f wha t 's
ha ppe n-
ing
in t he
e co no m y .
In
f a ct ,
t he r e 's
a ct ua lly
no e co no m ic
a na ly s is
in m o s t bo o ks
o n t he Thir d
Wa y ,
a nd
t ha t ,
o f
co ur s e ,
is
v e r y
m uch linke d t o t he
ne a r -co m ple t e
he ge m o ny
o f ne o -libe r a lis m
t o da y a m o ng
s o cia lis t
pa r t ie s . Cle a r ly
t his is s o m e -
t hing
t ha t I t hink we ne e d t o
put
int o
que s t io n.
One ne e ds t o s ho w t ha t ne o -
libe r a lis m wa s t he r e s ult o f a
po lit ica l s t r a t e gy .
It is no t
s o m e t hing
t ha t is a
s im ple
de v e lo pm e nt
o f
t e chno lo gy
o r a n ine v it a ble f a t e .
Mo r e o v e r ,
t he kind o f
glo ba liza -
t io n we a r e
wit ne s s ing t o da y
is no t t he
o nly
a lt e r na t iv e . I do n't t hink we ca nr e s is t
glo ba liza t io n
in t he s e ns e in which t he na t io na lis t s in
m a ny
co unt r ie s
wa nt ;
t ha t 's
im po s s ible .
But we ca n
ce r t a inly
de f ine a no t he r
s t r a t e gy
wit hin
glo ba liza t io n;
t he r e a r e a lt e r na t iv e s wit hin
glo ba liza t io n.
In
H e ge m o ny
a nd So cia lis t
St r a t e gy ,
we we r e
m a inly cr it icizing
t he kind o f
po lit ica l s t r a t e gy
t ha t wa s f o und in Ma r xis m . I
ce r t a inly
do no t
que s t io n
t he a ct ua l
r e le v a nce o f Ma r xis t
a na ly s is ,
but , ne v e r t he le s s ,
t he r e a r e
m a ny , m a ny t hings
t ha t
a Ma r xis t
a na ly s is
do e s no t a llo w us t o unde r s t a nd. A nd t ha t 's
why ,
in
m a ny
wa y s ,
I t ur ne d t o Ca r l Schm it t . Wha t I f ind
int e r e s t ing
in Schm it t is t he de v e l-
o pm e nt
o f a n
ins ight
t ha t wa s
pr e s e nt
in
Ma r x,
but lim it e d. The ide a o f
a nt a go -
nis m is
pr e s e nt
in
Ma r x,
but it 's lim it e d t o t he t e r m s o f cla s s
a nt a go nis m .
Whe n
Schm it t ins is t s t ha t " t he
po lit ica l"
ca n
e m e r ge
o ut o f
a ny
kind o f
r e la t io n,
be it
r e ligio us ,
m o r a l, a r t is t ic,
o r
wha t e v e r ,
wha t he s ho ws us is t ha t cla s s
a nt a go nis m
is
jus t
o ne m a nif e s t a t io n o f
s o m e t hing
t ha t is m uch
de e pe r .
H e m a ke s us unde r -
s t a nd t ha t
a nt a go nis m
is no t
s o m e t hing
t ha t we will e v e r be a ble t o e r a dica t e . We
s ho uld r e a d
Schm it t , ho we v e r ,
no t in o r de r t o
r e je ct
Ma r x,
but t o s ho w t ha t Ma r x's
ins ight co nce r ning a nt a go nis m
in t he dim e ns io n o f cla s s s ho uld in f a ct be
e xt e nde d. The
pr o ble m
wit h Ma r xis m ha s be e n t o r e duce a ll o t he r
a nt a go nis m s
t o cla s s
a nt a go nis m
s o t ha t
e v e r y
kind o f
a nt a go nis m
be co m e s s o m e kind o f
e piphe no m e no n
o f t he
de e pe r ,
cla s s
a nt a go nis m .
BWJ: So m e o ne like F r e dr ic
Ja m e s o n
m ight a r gue -a lt ho ugh
I wo uldn't wa nt
t o
s pe a k
f o r him -t ha t t ho s e f o r m s o f r e s is t a nce t o m ult ina t io na l a nd t r a ns na -
t io na l
co r po r a t io ns ,
s uch a s we r e s e e n in
Se a t t le ,
m e a n t ha t we 'r e a ll
r e a lizing
t ha t we 'r e
pr o le t a r ia ns
a nd m us t
f ight a ga ins t
m ult ina t io na l
co r po r a t io ns .
CM: I t hink t ha t t ha t 's
wr o ng.
We ne e d t o unde r s t a nd t ha t t he r e is a
dy na m ic
o f
a nt a go nis m
which is
pr o pe r
t o
m a ny
dif f e r e nt
s phe r e s .
Yo u ca n't
jus t
t a ke it
ba ck a nd
s a y
t his is a ll a
co ns e que nce
o f
ca pit a lis m .
Tha t 's
m y
dif f e r e nce wit h s uch
McDo na ld's
e m plo y e e s pick up
t ho us a nds o f
a pple s
t hr o wn
by
f a r m e r s
a ngr y
a t t a r if f s
s la ppe d
o n
s e v e r a l F r e nch
pr o duct s by
t he U.S.
e a r ly We dne s da y , A ugus t 25, 1999,
in
Ca v a illo n, s o ut he r n F r a nce .
(A P Pho t o /Cla ude Pa r is )
Mo uf f e
t " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 121
a Ma r xis t
a na ly s is .
But ,
o f
co ur s e ,
t he
de v e lo pm e nt
o f
ca pit a lis t
r e la t io ns is a
v e r y
im po r t a nt
a r e a t o
s t udy .
I
t hink,
f r o m t ha t
po int
o f v ie w, we ca nno t
igno r e
Ma r x.
BWJ:
While
y o u
a nd E r ne s t o La cla u wo r ke d
t hr o ugh
t he
le ga cy
o f Ma r xis m
a t
gr e a t le ngt h
in
H e ge m o ny
a nd So cia lis t
St r a t e gy , y o ur
m o r e r e ce nt wo r k ha s
f o cus e d
incr e a s ingly
o n libe r a lis m . Do e s t ha t in s o m e
wa y
r e f le ct o n a
cur r e nt ly
m o r ibund s t a t e o f Ma r xis t
a na ly s is ?
CM: It 's t r ue t ha t I ha v e
r e ce nt ly
be e n
de a ling
m uch m o r e wit h
libe r a lis m , but
t ha t is be ca us e I
t ho ught
t ha t it wa s a ls o
im po r t a nt
t o cr it icize libe r a lis m . The t r a -
dit io na l m o v e
a m o ng
le f t is t s who we r e cr it ica l o f Ma r xis m ha d be e n t o s ho w t ha t
t he r e wa s
r e a lly
no
pr o pe r unde r s t a nding
o f " t he
po lit ica l"
in Ma r x. I t hink t his
is
co r r e ct ,
but I a ls o
wa nt e d,
a f t e r
ha v ing
s ho wn
t ha t ,
t o s ho w t ha t t he s a m e wa s
t r ue o f libe r a lis m . It wa s a do uble m o v e . Ont he o ne
ha nd,
t o r e -v a lo r ize libe r a l-
is m in o r de r t o s ho w t ha t t he
s pe cif icit y
o f m o de r n
de m o cr a cy
co uld no t be
unde r s t o o d o ut s ide o f it s a r t icula t io n wit h libe r a lis m . One o f t he m a in
po int s
in
The Re t ur n
o f
t he Po lit ica l is t ha t
plur a lis m
is no t
s o m e t hing
t ha t co m e s f r o m t he
de m o cr a t ic t r a dit io n. In
f a ct ,
t he de m o cr a t ic t r a dit io n le f t t o it s e lf is
pr e gna nt
wit h t o t a lit a r ia nis m . Wha t a llo ws us t o
int e r r upt
s uch a
de v e lo pm e nt
is t he lib-
e r a l dis co ur s e o f
plur a lis m .
It wa s a r e -v a lo r iza t io n in t he s e ns e o f
a r guing
t ha t
we o n t he Le f t ne e d t o t a ke libe r a lis m m o r e
s e r io us ly ,
be ca us e it 's
im po r t a nt
t o
a dd t o
de m o cr a cy
t his dim e ns io n o f
plur a lis m
t ha t we ca nno t do wit ho ut . Ont he
o t he r
ha nd, ho we v e r ,
a nd t his is t he s e co nd
m o v e ,
we a ls o ne e d t o be a wa r e o f
t he
s ho r t co m ings
o f libe r a lis m . To o
m a ny pe o ple
o n t he Le f t f e ll int o t he ce le -
br a t io no f libe r a l
de m o cr a cy .
Tha t 's
why
Schm it t be ca m e s o
im po r t a nt
f o r
m e ;
he
he lpe d
m e t o
cr it ique
libe r a lis m a nd t o unde r s t a nd
why
t he
que s t io n
o f " t he
po lit ica l"
co uld no t be
t ho ught
wit hin libe r a lis m . So it wa s no t
s im ply
a ce le br a -
t io n o f
libe r a lis m ,
it wa s
r e a lly
a n
e nga ge m e nt
wit h s o m e
a s pe ct s
o f
libe r a lis m ,
while ,
a t t he s a m e
t im e ,
a
cr it ique
o f it s
s ho r t co m ings .
1111
TK: This
m ight
be a n
o ppo r t une
m o m e nt f o r
y o u
t o
s ugge s t ,
a t le a s t
br ie f ly , pe r -
ha ps ,
t he r o le t ha t t he no t io n o f
public s phe r e pla y s
in t he
pr o je ct
o f r a dica l
de m o cr a cy ?
A nd
pa r t icula r ly
ho w it
pla y s
t ha t r o le
a ga ins t
t he
ba ckgr o und
o f
o t he r no t io ns o f t he
public s phe r e ?
CM: One co nce r n o f
m y
m o r e r e ce nt wo r k
is , inde e d,
a n
a t t e m pt
t o
e nv is a ge
t he
na t ur e o f t he
public s phe r e
in a
de m o cr a cy .
I'v e
ba s ica lly
be e n
a r guing a ga ins t
122
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
t he t wo m a in m o de ls o f wha t is ca lle d " de libe r a t iv e
de m o cr a cy " : a ga ins t
Jo hn
Ra wls o n o ne s ide a nd
Jiir ge n
H a be r m a s o nt he o t he r .
Bo t h,
in dif f e r e nt
wa y s , t r y
t o cr e a t e a
public s phe r e
inwhich a r a t io na l co ns e ns us ca nbe a t t a ine d: Ra wls
by
r e le ga t ing e v e r y t hing
div is iv e t o t he
pr iv a t e ;
H a be r m a s ,
in a no t he r
wa y ,
be ca us e
he do e s no t e xclude s uch div is iv e is s ue s f r o m t he
be ginning,
but a llo ws t he m t o
co m e int o t he dis cus s io n a nd t he n s cr e e ns t he m o ut
by
m e a ns o f t he r ule s o f
r a t io na l dis co ur s e .
So ,
de s pit e
t he f a ct t ha t
t he y
cla im t o be
t he o r izing plur a lis t
de m o cr a cy , plur a lis m
is
a ct ua lly
e xclude d f r o m t he ir
co nce pt io ns
o f t he
public
s phe r e .
So ,
I'v e be e n
t r y ing
t o t hink a bo ut ho w o ne ca n
t r uly im a gine
a
plur a lis t
public s phe r e ,
a
public s phe r e
which a llo ws f o r
co nt e s t ing co nce pt s
a nd
po int s
o f
v ie w,
f o r r e a l co nf r o nt a t io n. I'v e be e n
t r y ing
t o
de v e lo p
a de m o cr a t ic m o de l
which I ca ll
" a go nis t ic plur a lis m ,"
which is a n a lt e r na t iv e no t
o nly
t o de libe r a -
t iv e
de m o cr a cy ,
but a ls o t o a n
a ggr e ga t iv e
m o de l o f
de m o cr a cy .
Bo t h o f
t he m , in
dif f e r e nt
wa y s a ga in,
a r e
co m ple t e ly
r a t io na lis t ic,
be ca us e t he
a ggr e ga t iv e
m o de l
be lie v e s
t ha t ,
in t he
s phe r e
o f
po lit ics , pe o ple
a r e
m a inly
m o v e d
by
t he ir int e r -
e s t s . This is wha t m a ke s t he m
a ct ,
a nd
de m o cr a cy
is inv o lv e d in t he
ne go t ia t io n
o f t ho s e int e r e s t s a nd t he
f inding
o f a
wa y
t o
a ggr e ga t e
t ho s e dif f e r e nce s . Tha t is
t he m o de l o f
de m o cr a cy
t ha t ha s
r e a lly
be e n do m ina nt s ince t he e nd o f t he Se co nd
Wo r ld Wa r .
H e r e ,
I t hink
a ga in
in t e r m s o f Ca r l Schm it t : o ne o f t he r e a s o ns t ha t libe r a ls
ca nno t
r e a lly
unde r s t a nd
po lit ics ,
he
s a y s ,
is t ha t f o r t he m t he indiv idua l is t he
t e r m inus a
quo
a nd t he t e r m inus a d
que m .
So if
y o u
s t a r t a nd f inis h wit h t he
indiv idua l,
y o u
ca n ne v e r
r e a lly gr a s p
t he
s pe cif icit y
o f " t he
po lit ica l,"
which is
a lwa y s
a co lle ct iv e ide nt if ica t io n. Wha t m a ke s
pe o ple
a ct
po lit ica lly
is wha t I'v e
ca lle d
" pa s s io ns ."
Co lle ct iv e ide nt if ica t io ns ha v e t o do wit h
de s ir e ,
wit h f a n-
t a s ie s ,
wit h
e v e r y t hing
t ha t is
pr e cis e ly
no t int e r e s t s o r t he r a t io na l. Ins t e a d o f
t hinking
a bo ut
po lit ics
a s a
pla ce
whe r e we s ho uld a ll
ge t t o ge t he r
a nd
t r y
t o f ind
t he r a t io na l s o lut io n-t his is no t wha t
po lit ics
is a bo ut a t
a ll-po lit ics
ne e ds t o
s pe a k
t o
pe o ple
a bo ut t he ir
pa s s io ns
in o r de r t o m o bilize t he m t o wa r d de m o cr a t ic
de s igns .
I'm
t r y ing
t o t hink o f a m o de l o f t he
public s phe r e
which will no t be o ne
whe r e
pe o ple
le a v e a s ide a ll t he ir dif f e r e nce s in o r de r t o
t r y
t o r e a ch a
co ns e ns us ,
but
pr e cis e ly
a
s phe r e
whe r e a n
a go nis t ic
co nf r o nt a t io n t a ke s
pla ce .
F o r ,
t o s e e t ha t
y o u
ca n
r e a lly
e xe r cis e
y o ur r ight s , y o u
ne e d t o be
giv e n
a lt e r na t iv e s . If
y o u
do n't
ha v e t he
cho ice ,
t he n t he who le de m o cr a t ic
pr o ce s s
is
co m ple t e ly m e a ningle s s .
This
unde r s t a nding
o f t he
public s phe r e
links
up a ga in
t o wha t we dis cus s e d
in t e r m s o f
a nt a go nis m
a nd
a go nis m . A ga ins t
Schm it t 's ide a o f
a nt a go nis m
a s a
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 123
s t r uggle
be t we e n f r ie nd a nd
e ne m y ,
wha t I ca ll
a go nis m
is a n us /t he m
dis t inc-
t io n
t ho ught
o f in t e r m s o f a dv e r s a r ie s . The r e is a r e a l co nf r o nt a t io n be t we e n
a dv e r s a r ie s ,
but t he r e is ne v e r t he le s s a ls o a
s y m bo lic s pa ce
which is
co m m o n,
while in a n
a nt a go nis t ic
r e la t io n t he r e is no
s y m bo lic s pa ce
in co m m o n. In a n
a dv e r s a r ia l
r e la t io n,
y o u'v e go t s o m e t hing
in
co m m o n, which,
in o ur
ca s e ,
is t he
a lle gia nce
t o t he
e t hico -po lit ica l pr inciple
o f libe r a l
de m o cr a cy -libe r t y
a nd
e qua lit y
f o r a ll-e v e n
t ho ugh
we a r e
go ing
t o ha v e dif f e r e nt
int e r pr e t a t io ns
o f
t ho s e
pr inciple s ,
be t we e n a r a dica l de m o cr a t ic
int e r pr e t a t io n,
f o r
ins t a nce ,
o r a
s o cia l de m o cr a t ic
int e r pr e t a t io n,
o r wha t e v e r . If t he r e is a
v ibr a nt ,
po lit ica l public
s phe r e
whe r e t his kind o f co nf r o nt a t io n ca n t a ke
pla ce ,
it is le s s
like ly
t ha t t he r e
will be co nf r o nt a t io ns a bo ut
no n-ne go t ia ble
is s ue s o r e s s e nt ia lis t ide nt it ie s .
Wha t I'm
a r guing
is t ha t t his f o r m o f
a go nis t ic public s phe r e
is no t
s o m e t hing
t ha t s ho uld be s e e n a s
ne ga t iv e
o r
t hr e a t e ning
f o r
de m o cr a cy .
Ont he
co nt r a r y ,
it
is wha t ca n
ke e p de m o cr a cy
a liv e a nd
im pe de
t he
da nge r
o f e xt r e m e
r ight -wing
m o v e m e nt s t ha t co uld m o bilize
pa s s io ns
in a n a nt i-de m o cr a t ic
wa y .
TK: Wha t r ule s
go v e r n
e xclus io n f r o m t he
public s phe r e ?
Yo u
s a id, f ir s t ,
t ha t
it 's a bo ut a f a ilur e t o a dhe r e t o t he m o t t o o f
libe r t y
a nd
e qua lit y
f o r a ll. Co uld
y o u
m a ke a m o r e im m a ne nt r ule ? Wo uld t his be a no t he r
wa y
o f
phr a s ing
it :
t ha t t he r e 's a co m m it m e nt t o t he e xis t e nce o f a
public s phe r e ?
The r e
y o u'd
be
v e r y
clo s e t o Le f o r t a nd his de f init io n o f t he
public s phe r e
a s t he
s pa ce
o f t he
le git im a cy
o f t he de ba t e a bo ut wha t is
le git im a t e
a nd wha t is
ille git im a t e .
CM: Ye s .
E xa ct ly .
I wo uld a ls o s t r e s s t he f a ct t ha t s uch a de ba t e s ho uld no t be
unde r s t o o d in a r a t io na lis t ic
wa y
but int e r m s o f t he m o biliza t io n o f
pa s s io ns
a nd
co lle ct iv e f o r m s o f ide nt if ica t io n. This is
why
a r t is t ic
pr a ct ice s
ha v e s uch a n
im po r t a nt
r o le t o
pla y
in t he
public s phe r e .
124
Gr e y
Ro o m 02
No t e s
1. This int e r v ie w t o o k
pla ce
inNe w Yo r k o n
27
A pr il
2000. Be ca us e o f
pr io r
t im e co m m it -
m e nt s ,
Ro s a ly n
De ut s che wa s
o blige d
t o le a v e
be f o r e t he int e r v ie w's co nclus io n.
2. Ca r l Schm it t wa s a
po lit ica l
t he o r is t a nd
cr it ic o f libe r a l
de m o cr a cy
who s e
wr it ings
include
The Cr is is
o f Pa r lia m e nt a r y De m o cr a cy
(1926),
t r a ns . E lle n
Ke nne dy (Ca m br idge ,
Ma s s .: MIT
Pr e s s , 1985)
a nd The
Co nce pt o f
t he Po lit ica l
(1927),
t r a ns .
Ge o r ge
Schwa b
(Chica go :
Univ e r s it y
o f
Chica go
Pr e s s , 1996).
A lt ho ugh
he
is a co nt r o v e r s ia l
f igur e
o na cco unt o f his
ha v ing
jo ine d
t he Na zi
Pa r t y
in
1933,
his ide a s ha v e
incr e a s ingly
be e ns t udie d
by po lit ica l
t he o r is t s
o f t he
Le f t ,
f o r e m o s t
a m o ng
t he m Cha nt a l Mo uf f e .
It is he r
po s it io n
t ha t o ne m us t t hink " wit h
Schm it t
a ga ins t
Schm it t " a nd t ha t his t r e ncha nt
cr it ique
o f libe r a l
de m o cr a cy
ca ne lucida t e it s
s ho r t co m ings ,
no t ino r de r t o
r e je ct
libe r a l de m o c-
r a cy ,
but in o r de r t o
e nv is a ge
ho w t ho s e s ho r t -
co m ings
ca nbe r e m e die d o r o v e r co m e . F o r f ur -
t he r
dis cus s io n,
s e e Cha nt a l
Mo uf f e , e d., The
Cha lle nge o f
Ca r l Schm it t
(Lo ndo n: Ve r s o , 1999)
a nd
Mo uf f e ,
" Ca r l Schm it t a nd t he Pa r a do x
o f Libe r a l
De m o cr a cy "
in The De m o cr a t ic
Pa r a do x
(Lo ndo n: Ve r s o , 2000),
36-59.
3. Se e Cha nt a l
Mo uf f e ,
The Re t ur n
o f
t he
Po lit ica l
(Lo ndo n: Ve r s o , 1993).
4. Se e Miche l
F o uca ult , The
H is t o r y o f
Se xu-
a lit y .
Vo lum e 1: A n
Int r o duct io n, t r a ns . Ro be r t
H ur le y
(Ne w
Yo r k:
Pa nt he o n, 1978).
5. Se e
Mo uf f e ,
The De m o cr a t ic Pa r a do x.
6. On Le f o r t , he r e a nd be lo w, s e e Cla ude
Le f o r t , " Po lit ics a nd H um a n
Right s ,"
in The
Po lit ica l F o r m s
o f
Mo de r n
So cie t y :
Bur e a u-
cr a cy , De m o cr a cy ,
To t a lit a r ia nis m
(Ca m br idge ,
Ma s s .: MIT Pr e s s , 1986) a nd Le f o r t , " The
Que s t io n
o f
De m o cr a cy "
a nd " H um a n
Right s
a nd
t he We lf a r e
St a t e ," t r a ns . Da v id
Ma ce y ,
inDe m o c-
r a cy
a nd Po lit ica l
The o r y (Minne a po lis :
Uni-
v e r s it y
o f Minne s o t a
Pr e s s , 1988).
7. Se e
Gio r gio A ga m be n,
H o m o Sa ce r :
So v e r e ign
Po we r a nd t he Ba r e
Lif e ,
t r a ns . Da nie l
H e lle r -Ro a ze n
(St a nf o r d: St a nf o r d
Univ e r s it y
Pr e s s , 1998);
A ga m be n,
Re m na nt s
o f
A us chwit z:
The Wit ne s s a nd t he
A r chiv e ,
t r a ns . Da nie l H e lle r -
Ro a ze n
(Ne w
Yo r k: Zo ne Bo o ks , 2000); a nd
H a nna h
A r e ndt , " The De cline o f t he Na t io n-
St a t e a nd t he E nd o f t he
Right s
o f Ma n"
(1948),
in The
Or igins o f
To t a lit a r ia nis m
(Sa n
Die go :
H a r co ur t Br a ce &
Co m pa ny ,
1979).
8. E t ie nne
Ba liba r , Le s F r o nt ie r e s de la
de m o cr a t ie
(Pa r is : De co uv e r t e , 1992),
e s p.
137.
Se e a ls o
Ba liba r ,
" 'Right s
o f Ma n' a nd
'Right s
o f
t he Cit ize n': The Mo de r nDia le ct ic o f
E qua lit y
a nd
F r e e do m ," t r a ns .
Ja m e s Swe ns o n,
in
Ma s s e s ,
Cla s s e s , Ide a s : St udie s o nPo lit ics a nd Philo s -
o phy be f o r e
a nd
a f t e r
Ma r x (Lo ndo n:
Ro ut le dge ,
1994).
9. Se e
Julia Kr is t e v a ,
St r a nge r s
t o
Our s e lv e s ,
t r a ns . Le o nS. Ro udie z
(Ne w
Yo r k: Co lum bia
Univ e r s it y
Pr e s s , 1991).
10. E r ne s t o La cla u a nd Cha nt a l
Mo uf f e ,
H e ge m o ny
a nd So cia lis t
St r a t e gy :
To wa r ds a
Ra dica l De m o cr a t ic Po lit ics
(Lo ndo n: Ve r s o , 1985).
Mo uf f e
I " E v e r y
F o r m o f A r t H a s a Po lit ica l Dim e ns io n" 125

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