How plural, really, is pluralism today? In this book a prominent political theorist reworks the traditional pluralist imagination, rendering it more inclusive and responsive to new drives to pluralization. Traditional pluralism, William E. Connolly shows, gives too much priority to past political settlements, allotments of public space and power relations already made and fixed. It deflates the politics of pluralization. "The Ethos of Pluralization" explores the constitutive tension between pluralism and pluralization, pursuing an ethos of politics that enables new forces of pluralization to find receptive responses in public life. Connolly explores how contemporary drives to pluralize stir the reactionary forces of political fundamentalism and how fundamentalism generates the cultural fragmentation it purports to resist. The reluctance of traditional pluralists to address the tension between pluralism and pluralization plays into the hands of fundamentalist forces. "The Ethos of Pluralization" eventually ranges beyond the borders of the territorial state to explore relations between the globalization of economic life and a more adventurous pluralization of political identities.
Engaging images of pluralism and nationalism advanced by Tocqueville, Schumpeter, Ricoeur, Walzer, Herz, and Kurth, Connolly draws selectively upon Nietzsche, Foucault, Butler and Deleuze to delineate an ethos of politics that makes for new identities while protecting conditions that make pluralism and governance possible.
Introduction - the pluralist imagination; nothing is fundamental ...; the desire to punish; democracy, equality, normality; fundamentalism in America; democracy and territoriality; Tocqueville, religiosity and pluralization.