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Politische Urteilskraft – Zur Aktualität eines traditionellen Begriffs

  • Andrea Marlen Esser EMAIL logo

Abstract

In contemporary political discourse, in which many democratic relationships hitherto taken to be self-explanatory and stable have begun to falter somewhat, a call for judgement has, after a lengthy interval, made itself heard again. Yet even if it is in some way clear to us what is meant by political judgement, and clear, too, that it is certainly useful for political actors or institutions to have political judgement at their disposal, it is, nevertheless, difficult to specify the concept precisely. What can we, and what should we, understand by “political judgement”? This essay attempts to address the question. In a first step (1) I try to indicate something of the relevant “disposition” involved. I then (2) take a brief look at conceptions of judgement which have been tried out to date, at least within the philosophical tradition. Here I concentrate on Hannah Arendt’s famous, yet fragmentary and incomplete, contribution and her reflections on Kant’s Critique of Judgment, in which she develops a political reading of what Kant called the “Maxims of Judgment”. In a third step (3) I will briefly elucidate these. In my view, however, we should not be content to leave the matter with Arendt’s reflections. For this reason, I also attempt a pragmatist transformation of these maxims. In a fourth step (4) I try to indicate the consequences which this might have for the way in which theories are formulated in political philosophy.


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Published Online: 2017-12-13
Published in Print: 2017-12-20

© 2017 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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