Chapter

Political Theory: An Overview

Iris Marion Young

in A New Handbook of Political Science

Published in print September 1998 | ISBN: 9780198294719
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599361 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198294719.003.0020
 Political Theory: An Overview

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Traces the developments in contemporary political theory of the last 20 years in the politicization of the social. Six major trends are analysed. The debate around social justice is a disagreement about the relationship between equality and liberty. Recent democratic theory deals with the question of citizen participation. Feminists have challenged the traditional public–private distinction as well as the universality they regard as male gendered. Post‐modernism reflects on the relationship between political institutions and social power, and conceptualizes political actors as shaped by political processes. New social movements bring previously private issues into the political sphere. Finally, communitarians aim to understand political values from within their specific social and cultural contexts.

Keywords: communitarianism; democratic theory; feminism; political theory; politicization; post‐modernism; social justice; social movements

Chapter.  10102 words. 

Subjects: Politics

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