Metabasis N. 30
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Each essay of this journal is reviewed by two anonymous referees and their comments are sent to the authors .

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The conflict: multidisciplinary approaches

The conflict: multidisciplinary approaches

November 2020 - Year XV - Number 30

Political reflections

Conflicting cultures: ideas for a possible democratic coexistence

Francesco Bertoldi

DOI: 10.7413/18281567178

The article intends to analyse the problem of the coexistence of opposite and alternative “comprehensive doctrines” in today's Western society, on the basis of a comparison between the thought of Schmitt, Böckenförde, Habermas, Rawls and Charles Taylor. In this regard the article proposes a possible solution to avoid, on the one hand, the intolerant goal of a total homogeneity, and on the other a naive and aproblematic acceptance of a relativistic multiculturalism.

Central role of conflict’s conception in Spengler

Matteo G. Brega

DOI: 10.7413/18281567179

Conflict can be read as a twentieth century fundamental understanding category, especially if applied to Spengler, both as an elected point of view and as a decisive moment in the formation of events, his-tory and morphologies of Zivilisation. The comparison with Nietzsche’s Seconda Inattuale, with some Heideggerian themes and with the political reflections of Konservative Revolution, can help to delineate more precisely the effects of the concept of conflict in order to show its unavoidable persistence.

Ordeals and wounded sovereignty: on public execution as conflict resolution in Michel Foucault’s work.

Andrea Germani

DOI: 10.7413/18281567180

Michel Foucault in his book Surveiller et punir has investigated the evolution of prison system and penal system from the ancient régime to the post-revolutionary era. In the first part of the volume public execution as both a deterrent and an educational technique is discussed; the body of the condemned is teared apart in front of the citizenship, this is the very moment when justice is served, the king shows himself through the ordeal and manifests his absolute power. Everyone who dares to violate the law can be considered an enemy; in this dimension felony and treason are put on the same level and even the most violent act of revenge by the king is fully justified.

The symbolic dimension of diversity: the matrix of ethno-cultural conflict.

Michele Lanna

DOI: 10.7413/18281567181

In this paper the concepts of identity, culture, ethnicity, symbol and cultural conflict are explored and the author underlines how cultural diversity, if on the one hand, possesses a strong aptitude to constitute an element of tension, opposition and conflict, on the other hand it translates into “cultural conflict”, when it is accompanied either by conditions of exclusion, marginalization and economic, social and political deprivation or by powerful ideological and nationalistic impulses.

From the rule of law to the welfare state: Italy 1843-1903.

Franca Menichetti

DOI: 10.7413/18281567182

The last decade of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries are mainly characterized by the political end of Mazzini and by the unstoppable rise of liberalism. Liberalism is in fact the triumphant ideology even if between disorientation and reactionary pressures, such as the Sicilian Fasci, the riots of the Lunigiana miners and the riots over the high prices of Bava Beccaris in Milan, the appointment of General Pelloux as prime minister, who calls on Parliament for measures that undermine the freedom of the press, assembly and association, but are eventually defeated by the intransigence of the socialists, radical republicans and left liberals. Meanwhile, the Liberal Zanardelli is called to the Government to remedy Pelloux's failures, who appoints Giolitti as Minister of the Interior and insists on the urgency of social protection of the working class. In the meantime, a strange alliance is created between the bourgeoisie of the north and the agrarians of the south, aimed at favouring only the industries of the North, while in the south people are starving and the phenomenon of brigandage is dying rises. And the socialists? By now they have abandoned the Marxist ideology and married the positivistic one. Their impact on the birth of the welfare state is completely marginal, while it will be the ground where liberals will give their best.

Precariousness of the urban life: sowing the seeds of conflict.

Massimo Vittorio

DOI: 10.7413/18281567185

The paper focuses on the concept of conflict within the new field of urban ethics. After a quick view on the topic of the ideal city as utopia, thoroughly depicted in the history of philosophy, the paper analyses the concept of space and one specific property of it: replicability. After defining it, the paper shows how this specific quality of space fosters precariousness within the socio-economic urban fabric: hence, the concept of the precarious city is outlined. The paper pinpoints the main consequences of precariousness for the urban lifestyle, particularly for the urban peripheries, and highlights how replicability and precariousness shape conflict within the city and among different urban areas and dwellers. The paper concludes with an assessment whether conflict is a physiological condition for urban life and the harmonious city a mere utopia or otherwise.

Philosophical Horizons

From the Post Democracy to the Call for Identities. Critical Remarks on Colin Crouch's Diagnosis and Remedies to the Crisis of Modern Western Democracies at the Threshold of Political Philosophy and Political Sociology.

Elena Alessiato

DOI: 10.7413/18281567176

The paper explores the current crisis of the modern western democracies from the point of view of Colin Crouch's work. Through the lens of his post-democratic diagnosis, the democratic crisis appears to involve the relationship between the public function of the States and the private organization of the economic power and, consequently, the relationship between the national management of power and services and the trans- or inter-national extension of the economic forces. The social and political measures suggested by Crouch as possible remedies for reacting against the democratic crisis are analyzed and put under criticism in the second section of the paper. The critical assumption is that Crouch’s proposal, regarding the top-down constitution of transnational democratic institutions, on one side, and the bottom-up mobilization of local and party identities, on the other, risk of being as post-democratic as the problems they want to address. By highlighting this point of view, the paper focuses on the necessity of re-integrating in the political discourse the categories of sovereignty and conflict as ineliminable components of each political order. In the same frame is also considered the need of enlarging the political spectrum of political identities in order to reactivate genuine political forces against a-democratic powers.

Barbarians at the border and the emptiness of Us. Variations on the theme of the fear.

Luigi Alfieri

DOI: 10.7413/18281567177

If reflecting on the question about what is “Us”, it can be conceived as the condition of existence of everyone’s life and also what contributes to the formation of the “I”, making its recognition possible. From the conventional and contractual meeting of many “I” arise the society, within which individuals think themselves as people. However, the “Us” is also a malleable container, which leads the conceptual path to deal with the theme of emptiness, the stranger and the confrontation with the Other different from the “I”, through the categories of border and fear.

Politics, towards an anthropology of interconnectivity? Power and control of knowledge in the digital society.

Fiammetta Ricci

DOI: 10.7413/18281567183

Can the consideration about the relationship between power, new languages of digital interconnection and forms of knowledge control be thought through the idea of an anthropology of interconnectivity to understand the aspects and implications of social living and political inter-acting? This question is the core and the background of the reflections that will follow, to investigate what is the new order of logical procedures, ethical frameworks and new forms of control of cognitive processes of understanding real-ity within the individual and relational plan of existence. In fact, an anthropology of interconnectivity does not only include the relationship between Man, the environment and technologies of himself, and therefore the human ability to rationally modify and transform the natural data, but it also implies the need to respond to that "ocean of insecurity" determined by the technicalization of the world.

Politics, rootedness in the earth and technique in Martin Heidegger’s onto-historical thinking

Erasmo Silvio Storace

DOI: 10.7413/18281567184

The paper deals with the political aspects of Martin Heidegger’s thought, also tackling, albeit in a mar-ginal way, some aspects connected to his relationship with National Socialism. To do so, the concepts of “rootedness in the earth” and “technique”, in particular, will be examined in the framework of Mar-tin Heidegger’s so called “onto-historical thinking”, to which Friedrich-Wilhelm von Herrmann has dedicated several interesting studies. First, the paper covers Martin Heidegger’s utter rejection of the National Socialist ideology, in spite of what his critics have variously claimed; Alfredo Marini’s im-portant studies, besides the contributions of von Herrmann and Francesco Alfieri, were taken into par-ticular consideration. Secondly, it introduces the concept of “onto-historical thinking” which Heidegger mostly developed in his Beiträge zur Philosophie (Vom Ereignis), in order to demonstrate its value in the field of political philosophy. Thirdly, “onto-historical thinking” was compared to “fundamental on-tology”. Fourthly, following Martin Heidegger, the necessity to refound ontology is demonstrated to be the prerequisite in order to rethink politics: the concepts of “rootedness in the earth” (and of “uproot-ing”) are here considered. Fifthly, the concept of “earth” was analyzed, together with its philosophical-political value. Finally, the connection of all this to the key notion of technique was illustrated.

Totalitarian Reconfigurations of Power

Jean-Jacques Wunenburger

DOI: 10.7413/18281567186

Does a specific essence of totalitarianism exist as an undemocratic form of power? What profound meaning does totalitarianism assume in respect of the evolution accomplished by our contemporary societies? The article aims to reflect on what connects totalitarianism to the symbolic absolutization of power, taking into account the various examples provided by history, the position occupied by religion and proposing a particular consideration focused on the enlightened despotism. The thought retraces a path that leads to the analysis of charismatic authoritarianism in the form of a new social contract between government and people, then focuses attention on the concept of post-democratic authoritarianism, characterized by various contradictory forces, up to the utopia and the hypothesis of a consensual totalitarian society.

Metabasis N. 30
digital edition

peer review

Each essay of this journal is reviewed by two anonymous referees and their comments are sent to the authors .

Evaluation Form