Habermas is widely criticized for adumbrating an essentialist, deliberative, and consensual approach to democracy that neglects the significance and importance of contingency, conflict, and emotions in the struggle for hegemony and collective identification. However, his conception of system and lifeworld raise the claim that no society could exist without providing for a minimal degree of political cooperation between professional actors in the political system and spontaneously acting laypeople in the social lifeworld. Contingency, conflict, and emotions are obviously at play in this political conception of how to ground system and lifeworld in mutual relations of power, knowledge, trust, and respect. The goal is not to reach a stable consensus or succumb to conflict and chaos but to avoid that system becomes uncoupled from lifeworld, thus undermining the reciprocal connection between political authorities and laypeople required to make and implement authoritative decisions which are ‘for', ‘of', ‘with', and ‘by' ‘the people'.
|Title of host publication||Political Identity and Democratic Citizenship in Turbulent Times|
|Editors||Niels Noergaard Kristensen|
|Place of Publication||United States|
|Number of pages||35|
|Publication status||Published - 19 Jun 2020|