Alterity as democracy-to-come

Stella Gaon

in Democracy in Crisis

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780719079238
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781702123 | DOI:
Alterity as democracy-to-come

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This chapter analyses the relationship between alterity and the conception of ‘democracy-to-come’ that emerges in the later writings of Jacques Derrida. It argues that though the letter of democratic politics signifies its meaning as rule, the spirit of democracy is its radical openness to the alterity of others, and that, in this meeting between democracy's letter and its spirit rests the only hope for democracy. It contends that this willingness and openness, this alterity at the heart of political action is the very essence of democracy.

Keywords: alterity; democracy-to-come; Jacques Derrida; democratic politics; radical openness; political action

Chapter.  8123 words. 

Subjects: Politics

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