Re-appropriating the political through enacting a pedagogical politics of place

John Crossan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper critically analyses the post-political thesis, highlighting its universalising and agency-grabbing tendencies. Drawing on my own family life, anarchist theory and long-standing traditions of 'properly' political placemaking by past and present grassroots actors, the paper unsettles two interrelated claims on which the post-political thesis sits. First, that the political (le politique) is in retreat. Second, that 'proper' politics constitutes a confrontational set of relations. Informed by empirical observations I present an existing form of rigorous political encounter enacted in anarchist-influenced social centres. The politics on offer here has a supportive pedagogical quality to it and, crucially, there are semblances of this pedagogical politics found in multiple sites. Focusing on the 'micro-physics of power' at work in social centres, I show how such organisational practices counter the predetermined finalities of the post-political condition by enacting what I call 'equality-as-tactic'. Community here is not an empty vessel that can be easily filled with 'empty signifiers'. On the contrary, post-political practices tend to crack under the scrutiny of a pedagogical politics aimed at equalising participation in the decisionmaking process.

LanguageEnglish
Number of pages9
JournalArea
Early online date4 Oct 2016
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 Oct 2016

Fingerprint

politics
finality
tactics
physics
equality
crack
vessel
participation
present
community
thesis

Keywords

  • Anarchism
  • Democracy
  • Equality
  • Placemaking
  • Post-politics
  • Social centre

Cite this

@article{23e81264626e46dfacff0db03ca5c0ec,
title = "Re-appropriating the political through enacting a pedagogical politics of place",
abstract = "This paper critically analyses the post-political thesis, highlighting its universalising and agency-grabbing tendencies. Drawing on my own family life, anarchist theory and long-standing traditions of 'properly' political placemaking by past and present grassroots actors, the paper unsettles two interrelated claims on which the post-political thesis sits. First, that the political (le politique) is in retreat. Second, that 'proper' politics constitutes a confrontational set of relations. Informed by empirical observations I present an existing form of rigorous political encounter enacted in anarchist-influenced social centres. The politics on offer here has a supportive pedagogical quality to it and, crucially, there are semblances of this pedagogical politics found in multiple sites. Focusing on the 'micro-physics of power' at work in social centres, I show how such organisational practices counter the predetermined finalities of the post-political condition by enacting what I call 'equality-as-tactic'. Community here is not an empty vessel that can be easily filled with 'empty signifiers'. On the contrary, post-political practices tend to crack under the scrutiny of a pedagogical politics aimed at equalising participation in the decisionmaking process.",
keywords = "Anarchism, Democracy, Equality, Placemaking, Post-politics, Social centre",
author = "John Crossan",
year = "2016",
month = "10",
day = "4",
doi = "10.1111/area.12301",
language = "English",
journal = "Area",
issn = "0004-0894",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",

}

Re-appropriating the political through enacting a pedagogical politics of place. / Crossan, John.

In: Area, 04.10.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Re-appropriating the political through enacting a pedagogical politics of place

AU - Crossan, John

PY - 2016/10/4

Y1 - 2016/10/4

N2 - This paper critically analyses the post-political thesis, highlighting its universalising and agency-grabbing tendencies. Drawing on my own family life, anarchist theory and long-standing traditions of 'properly' political placemaking by past and present grassroots actors, the paper unsettles two interrelated claims on which the post-political thesis sits. First, that the political (le politique) is in retreat. Second, that 'proper' politics constitutes a confrontational set of relations. Informed by empirical observations I present an existing form of rigorous political encounter enacted in anarchist-influenced social centres. The politics on offer here has a supportive pedagogical quality to it and, crucially, there are semblances of this pedagogical politics found in multiple sites. Focusing on the 'micro-physics of power' at work in social centres, I show how such organisational practices counter the predetermined finalities of the post-political condition by enacting what I call 'equality-as-tactic'. Community here is not an empty vessel that can be easily filled with 'empty signifiers'. On the contrary, post-political practices tend to crack under the scrutiny of a pedagogical politics aimed at equalising participation in the decisionmaking process.

AB - This paper critically analyses the post-political thesis, highlighting its universalising and agency-grabbing tendencies. Drawing on my own family life, anarchist theory and long-standing traditions of 'properly' political placemaking by past and present grassroots actors, the paper unsettles two interrelated claims on which the post-political thesis sits. First, that the political (le politique) is in retreat. Second, that 'proper' politics constitutes a confrontational set of relations. Informed by empirical observations I present an existing form of rigorous political encounter enacted in anarchist-influenced social centres. The politics on offer here has a supportive pedagogical quality to it and, crucially, there are semblances of this pedagogical politics found in multiple sites. Focusing on the 'micro-physics of power' at work in social centres, I show how such organisational practices counter the predetermined finalities of the post-political condition by enacting what I call 'equality-as-tactic'. Community here is not an empty vessel that can be easily filled with 'empty signifiers'. On the contrary, post-political practices tend to crack under the scrutiny of a pedagogical politics aimed at equalising participation in the decisionmaking process.

KW - Anarchism

KW - Democracy

KW - Equality

KW - Placemaking

KW - Post-politics

KW - Social centre

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84990185167&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1111/area.12301

DO - 10.1111/area.12301

M3 - Article

JO - Area

T2 - Area

JF - Area

SN - 0004-0894

ER -