The public sphere as dilemmatic space

Paul Hoggett, Marjorie Mayo and Miller Chris

in The dilemmas of development work

Published by Policy Press

Published in print November 2008 | ISBN: 9781861349729
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303732 | DOI:
The public sphere as dilemmatic space

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This chapter provides a broad conceptual foundation and explores different (liberal, Marxist and other) perspectives on the nature of the relationship between state and civil society and introduces concepts and arguments from contemporary social theory (Zygmunt Bauman on modernity) and moral theory (Charles Taylor and Bernard Williams) that contribute to the understanding of ethical agency in ambiguous and contested contexts. It argues that governance in a socially diverse society exemplifies such ambiguous and contested territory. It notes that the framework offered by such contemporary theorists is compared with that provided guidance to earlier generations of development workers. It also reconnects with the earlier work of Michael Lipsky, and Peter Marris and Martin Rein and indicates how these writers are more in touch with the emotional dimension of the ethical challenges of this kind of work.

Keywords: liberal; Marxist; state and civil society; contemporary social theory; Zygmunt Bauman; modernity; moral theory; Charles Taylor; Bernard Williams; ethical agency; development workers

Chapter.  7027 words. 

Subjects: Urban and Rural Studies

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