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Critical Theory in the Twenty-First Century
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Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. Chapter 1: Dialectics, De-Naturalisation and Social Differentiation (I): From the Public Sphere to the Emergence of Civil Society 3. Chapter 2: Dialectics, De-Naturalisation and Social Differentiation (II): From the Cognitive Content of Aesthetics to Critical Theory 4. Chapter 3: Critical Theory and Mediated Non-Identity 5. Chapter 4: Critical Theory and Political Theory 6. Chapter 5: New Paths Beyond the Marx-Freud Synthesis 7. Conclusion: The Mediations of Society Biblio Index

Promotional Information

This volume in the Critical Theory and Contemporary Society series examines the history of critical theory and its importance today.

Promotional Information

This volume in the Critical Theory and Contemporary Society series examines the history of critical theory and its importance today.

About the Author

Darrow Schecter is Reader in the School of History, Art History and Humanities, University of Sussex, UK. He has written books and articles on social and political thought, including Beyond Hegemony (2005); The History of the Left From Marx to the Present: Theoretical Perspectives (2007), and Critique of Instrumental Reason from Weber to Habermas (2010). He teaches history and political theory at the University of Sussex.

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Schecter offers not so much an update as a return to the spirit of critical theory--not least its stress on the need for an interdisciplinary and politically engaged approach to the study of contemporary society that is alive to the interconnections between culture, politics, law and economics in maintaining and transforming a given social formation. The result is a powerful manifesto for a new school of critical thought, able to address the challenges posed by globalisation, identity politics and the decline in support for conventional democracy. -- Richard Bellamy, Professor of Political Science UCL, University of London, UK, and author of Political Constitutionalism
Any attempt to reinvigorate critical theory must revisit the claim that the critique of knowledge is social critique and vice versa. Critical Theory in the Twenty-First Century does so by exploring the relations between dialectics, mediation, stratification and differentiation today. It is shown that attempts to address issues arising from persistent stratification that do not take functional differentiation into account are likely to offer quantitative solutions to problems that have become qualitative to a significant extent. The book demonstrates that although qualitative reform becomes possible with increased complexity and refined collective learning, it will not arise in the form of automatic systemic adjustment or spontaneous social evolution. New, more flexible mediations will depend on the institutionalisation of de-centred, rather than simply privatised decision-making processes. -- Dr. Andreas Fischer-Lescano, University of Bremen, Germany

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