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Ethics and Politics in Contemporary Theory Between Critical Theory and Post-Marxism by Mark Devenney

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8    Post-structuralism and democratic theory1

Introduction

All disciplines, including political science, are conservative. Disciplines police institutional boundaries in defining appropriate objects of study, in authorising methodological principles and in legitimising accredited subjects as their agents. It is unsurprising then that post-structuralist theory is viewed with scepticism by many political scientists, since it entails a critical interrogation of the objects, subjects and tools naturalised by disciplines. This hostility is frequently justified by invoking the spectre of the relativist, who decries the fundamental tenets of democratic theory and practice. Critics variously contend that post-structuralist theory undermines all moral ...

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