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July 1, 2022

Rancière and Revolution.

Purcell, Mark. (2014). Rancière and Revolution. Space & Polity, 18(2), 168 – 181.

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This paper explores what role Rancière's work can play in the struggle for a more democratic world. It highlights the strength of Rancière's conception of democracy, which clearly identifies democracy as a popular disruption of the prevailing police order. This order claims to have assigned a proper role to all parts of society. Democracy for Rancière is when an element emerges that has not been taken account of and demonstrates the police order's claim to be false. Among the many benefits of this way of understanding democracy, it upsets any easy association between hegemony and democracy - as in Laclau & Mouffe - and it refuses utterly the ideological fiising of democracy, capitalism, and the state offered by the liberaldemocratic- capitalist consensus. However, Rancière's approach also introduces significant limits on democracy because it denies that democracy can ever do more than disrupt the prevailing order. It does not allow for the possibility that democracy can grow and spread to the point that it becomes pervasive in the polity. This paper uses the case of the Egyptian uprising to show how this limitation closes off important political possibilities. The paper argues that Deleuze & Guattari's theorisation of revolution, when used carefully, is a necessary corrective to Rancière's too-restricted concept of democracy [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]; Copyright of Space & Polity is the property of Routledge and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)


Political Philosophy; Democracy; Hegemony; Capitalism; Egyptian Revolution, Egypt, 2011-; Deleuze; Guattari; Ranciere; Revolution; Ranciere, Jacques, 1940-