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The author understands solidarity primarily as a legal concept of co-operative projects of forming an ever further expanded democratic legal community (Rechtsgenossenschaft). Solidarity is complementary to justice, and principle of democracy that is self-legislated includes both sides. Self-legislation, solidarity and justice are equally universal concepts. The first section of the chapter is a brief diagnosis of modern society under conditions of global crisis. Democratic solidarity must stand up to two crucial experimental checks, one is normative and the other factual. The second section of the chapter draws some political conclusions related to the most fundamental problems of the present world society. The final section tries to specify four changes political agencies need to adopt to save democratic solidarities under stress from globalisation.
My paper has two parts. In the first part I will outline an evolutionary model for analyzing the relation of democracy, cosmopolitanism and conflict. In the second part I will apply it to the case of European constitutionalization, and its failure.
In February 1848 Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels's Manifesto of the Communist Party appeared in London's Red Republican. This treatise was the one and only celebration of the revolutionary power of the new, bourgeois age. Marx and Engels were expecting from the bourgeoisie and its epoch not only the freeing of all productive forces of humankind, but also the permanent revolution of all relations of production and, what is more, of all social relations:
The bourgeoisie cannot exist without continually revolutionizing the instruments of production, hence the relations of production, and therefore social relations as a whole . . . The continual transformation of production, the uninterrupted convulsion of all social conditions, a perpetual uncertainty and motion distinguish the epoch of the bourgeoisie from all earlier ones. All the settled, age-old relations with their train of time-honored preconceptions and viewpoints are dissolved; all newly formed ones become outmoded before they can ossify. Everything feudal and fixed goes up in smoke, everything sacred is profaned, and men are finally forced to take a down-to-earth view of their circumstances, their multifarious relations.
Hannah Arendt's idea of freedom can be said to have two main sources, the first being the Greek polis and the Roman res publica; the second St. Augustine and the Christian idea of a spontaneous new beginning (creatio ex nihilo). These two notions of freedom, which Arendt attempts to combine in her political theory, are not totally compatible. The first or republican idea of freedom is elitist in its content and presuppositions, whereas the second or Augustinian concept has an egalitarian core. This chapter examines both ideas, with specific attention to the tensions they generate in Arendt's work (section I). In the second (shorter and concluding) section, I show how Arendt's theory of political freedom is embedded in a narrative philosophy of history about the decline of man as a political animal, a narrative derived, for the most part, from the first (Graeco-Roman and elitist) concept of freedom. This concept of freedom also provides the normative basis for much of her critique of contemporary politics. We should, as a result, be somewhat skeptical about certain elements of this critique (Arendt's entirely negative view of politics as the quest for social justice, for example) even as we utilize her profounder insights about the nature of politics and freedom.
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