Democracy and the Symbolic Constitution of Society

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Abstract

Abstract. Building on Cassirer's philosophy of symbolic forms, this paper argues that the continuities and discontinuities characterizing the passage from medieval politics to modern democracy can best be understood by reference to political power's symbolic structure. For the one, political power, whether theocratic or democratic, always mediates an absolute power; as mediation, political power enacts the twofold movement which Cassirer has identified as characterisitc of all human symbolization: a distancing of, and approximation to, reality. For the other, democracy institutionalizes a category distinction between meaning and being, making of political unity a functional, rather than substantial, unity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-37
Number of pages26
JournalRatio Juris: An International Journal of Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law
Volume11
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1998

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political power
constitution
democracy
mediation
continuity
politics
Society

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title = "Democracy and the Symbolic Constitution of Society",
abstract = "Abstract. Building on Cassirer's philosophy of symbolic forms, this paper argues that the continuities and discontinuities characterizing the passage from medieval politics to modern democracy can best be understood by reference to political power's symbolic structure. For the one, political power, whether theocratic or democratic, always mediates an absolute power; as mediation, political power enacts the twofold movement which Cassirer has identified as characterisitc of all human symbolization: a distancing of, and approximation to, reality. For the other, democracy institutionalizes a category distinction between meaning and being, making of political unity a functional, rather than substantial, unity.",
author = "H.K. Lindahl",
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journal = "Ratio Juris: An International Journal of Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law",
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}

Democracy and the Symbolic Constitution of Society. / Lindahl, H.K.

In: Ratio Juris: An International Journal of Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law, Vol. 11, No. 1, 1998, p. 12-37.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Y1 - 1998

N2 - Abstract. Building on Cassirer's philosophy of symbolic forms, this paper argues that the continuities and discontinuities characterizing the passage from medieval politics to modern democracy can best be understood by reference to political power's symbolic structure. For the one, political power, whether theocratic or democratic, always mediates an absolute power; as mediation, political power enacts the twofold movement which Cassirer has identified as characterisitc of all human symbolization: a distancing of, and approximation to, reality. For the other, democracy institutionalizes a category distinction between meaning and being, making of political unity a functional, rather than substantial, unity.

AB - Abstract. Building on Cassirer's philosophy of symbolic forms, this paper argues that the continuities and discontinuities characterizing the passage from medieval politics to modern democracy can best be understood by reference to political power's symbolic structure. For the one, political power, whether theocratic or democratic, always mediates an absolute power; as mediation, political power enacts the twofold movement which Cassirer has identified as characterisitc of all human symbolization: a distancing of, and approximation to, reality. For the other, democracy institutionalizes a category distinction between meaning and being, making of political unity a functional, rather than substantial, unity.

M3 - Article

VL - 11

SP - 12

EP - 37

JO - Ratio Juris: An International Journal of Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

JF - Ratio Juris: An International Journal of Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

SN - 0952-1917

IS - 1

ER -