What is at stake in what I call the ‘agonistic’ struggle,[4] which I see as the core of a vibrant democracy, is the very configuration of power relations around which. The Belgian political theorist Chantal Mouffe, on the other hand, arrived at Mouffe called this kind of respectful conflict “agonistic pluralism” in contrast to both. Agonistic. Pluralism? / BY CHANTAL MOUFFE l’s testified by the increasing success of the extreme right in sev- eral countries, western societies are witnessing.

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We find this distinction between the political and politics in the other agonistic theories, though not always with the same signification.

How should democratic politics deal with conflict? No keywords specified fix it.

Agonism – Wikipedia

The science fiction novel Lady of Mazes by Karl Schroeder depicts a post-human future where “agonistics” is the ruling principle of the solar system.

But it must also enable the expression of conflict, which requires that citizens genuinely have the possibility of choosing between real alternatives.

In previous writings scrutinizing the growth of right-wing populist parties, I argued that their success was in great part due to the fact that they were often the only ones addressing the concerns of working-class people. Bonnie Honigan advocate of agonism, writes: I am convinced that the variety of extra-parliamentary struggles and the multiple forms of activism are valuable, not only to raise consciousness and to bring to the fore issues that are neglected, but also to provide a realm for the cultivation of different social relations.

Thank you for your feedback. In an agonistic politics, however, the antagonistic dimension is always present since what is at stake is the struggle between opposing hegemonic projects that can never be reconciled rationally, for one of them needs to be defeated.

Clearly those who advocate the creation kouffe agonistic public spaces, where the objective is to unveil all that is repressed by the dominant consensus are going to envisage the relation between artistic practices and their public in a very different way than those whose objective is the creation of consensus, even if this consensus is seen as a critical one.


Society is not to be seen as the unfolding of a logic exterior to itself, whatever the source of this logic could be: Request removal from index. By this I mean that, although she insists a good deal on human plurality and conceives politics as dealing with the community and with reciprocity between different beings, she never recognises that miuffe plurality is at the origin of antagonistic conflicts. Learn how and when to remove these template messages.

Especially during the s and s, many people, academics included, subscribed to a gaonistic Marxist analysis.

A front of total resistance to this power is made possible. It necessarily overflows the terrain of production of knowledge towards new practices of agobistic, consuming and collective appropriation of common spaces and everyday culture.

Thank You for Your Contribution! Artistic Activism and Agonistic Spaces Chantal Mouffe Can artistic practices still play a critical role in a society where the difference between art and advertizing have become blurred and where artists and cultural workers have become a necessary part of capitalist production? September Learn how and when to remove this template message.

It is through representation that collective political subjects are created and they do not exist beforehand. The principal objective of these authors is to prevent the closure of debate and to give free rein to the expression of plurality. The pluralism that a society must tolerate, however, is limited, according to Rawls, by a requirement of reasonableness—that is, the requirement that citizens do not seek to impose their own conception of the good on others who do not share it. Courtesy of the artist.

The work of Theodor Adorno and Michel Moufre have also invoked conceptions of agonism and the agon in a more critical sense beyond that of political counter-hegemony.


To acknowledge the dimension of the political as the ever present possibility of antagonism requires coming to terms with the lack of a final ground and the undecidability which pervades every order.

To look for an economic explanation is to miss the deep causes that are of a political nature. Retrieved from ” https: As we argued in Hegemony and Socialist Strategy [8] a radical democratic politics calls for the articulation of different levels of struggles so as to create a chain of equivalence among them. This has led some people to claim that art had lost its critical power because any form of critique is automatically recuperated and neutralized by capitalism.

The social and the political have thus the status of what Heidegger called existentialsi. In The Democratic Paradox I argue that Western liberal democracy is the articulation of two traditions: No wonder that the political constitutes its blind spot. This is why a democratic society requires a debate about possible alternatives.

Chantal Mouffe: Agonistic Democracy and Radical Politics

Contrary to the various liberal models, the agonistic approach that I am advocating recognizes that society is always politically instituted and never forgets that the terrain in which hegemonic interventions take place is always the outcome of previous hegemonic practices and that it is never an neutral one. In his book Pluralism Durham: To understand the political as the ever present possibility of antagonism, the absence of a final foundation and the undecidability that pervades every order must be acknowledged.

Towards a Radical Democratic Politics London: There are those for whom the political refers to a space of liberty and common action, while others view it as a site of conflict and antagonism. Discover some of the most interesting and trending topics of