In this broad-ranging text, Ray assesses Critical Theory, particularly that of J[um]urgen Habermas. Developing an analysis of such ideas as the public sphere, communicative action and the colonization of the lifeworld, he examines the insights that Critical Theory can offer global analysis and the challenges to Critical Theory from global social change.
In a detailed discussion of post-communist eastern Europe, Islamic revivalism in Iran and the liberation struggle in South Africa, the author argues that modernity is poised between the threat of authoritarian politics of identity on one hand and the promise of opening up new democratic communicative organizations on the other.
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About the Author
I joined the University of Kent in 1998. Before that I was in the Department of Sociology at Lancaster University. In 1996, I was visiting scholar, Victoria University Wellington, New Zealand. At Kent I was Head of the Department of Sociology and then SSPSSR between 1999-2001, and Sub-Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences between 2009-11. I am currently Director of Research for SSPSSR.
Table of Contents
Introduction Marx, Critical Theory and Social MovementsPART ONEAuthority and TraditionFrom Praxis to CommunicationCommunication and EvolutionSocial Movements and the LifeworldPART TWOIntroductionLegitimation in Peripheral StatesThe Crisis of State SocialismIslamic JacobinsState, 'Race' and RegulationConclusion Modernity's Unfinished Business