Saturday, April 12, 2014

New Book on Hyperpluralism and Political Liberalism

The Democratic Horizon

Hyperpluralism and the Renewal of Political Liberalism

by Alessandro Ferrara

(Cambridge University Press, 2014)

243 pages


Alessandro Ferrara explains what he terms "the democratic horizon" - the idea that democracy is no longer simply one form of government among others, but is instead almost universally regarded as the only legitimate form of government, the horizon to which most of us look. Professor Ferrara reviews the challenges under which democracies must operate, focusing on hyperpluralism, and impresses a new twist onto the framework of political liberalism. He shows that distinguishing real democracies from imitations can be difficult, responding to this predicament by enriching readers' understanding of the spirit of democracy; clearing readers' views of pluralism from residues of ethnocentrism; and conceiving multiple versions of democratic culture, rooted in the diversity of civilizational contexts.

Contents [preview]

Introduction [pdf]

1. Reasons That Move the Imagination: Politics at Its Best
2. Democracy and Openness
3. Reflexive Pluralism and the Conjectural Turn
4. Hyperpluralism and the Multivariate Democratic Polity
5. Cuius Religio, Eius Res Publica: On Multiple Democracies
6. Multiculturalism: Negation or Completion of Liberalism?
7. Beyond the Nation: Governance and Deliberative Democracy
8. Truth, Justification and Political Liberalism


Alessandro Ferrara is Professor of Political Philosophy at the University of Rome. He is the author of "Reflective Authenticity: Rethinking the Project of Modernity" (Routledge, 1998) and "The Force of the Example: Explorations in the Paradigm of Judgment" (Columbia University Press, 2008).

See also Ferrara's paper "Judging Democracy in the 21st Century: Crisis or Transformation?" (2013, pdf).

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