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Authors: Biale, Enrico
Keywords: Partisanshipdeliberationpolitical justificationpolitical agency
Issue Date: 9-May-2016
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Enrico Biale, "RAGIONI PARTIGIANE E AGENCY DEMOCRATICA", in: "Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2016) XVIII/1", Trieste, EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste, 2016, pp. 89-109
Series/Report no.: Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics
(2016) XVIII/1
While parties play a fundamental role within democratic systems, from a normative perspective providing a justification of parties and partisanship is all but obvious. According to this anti-partisan approach, parties and partisanship cannot be considered fully legitimate because they polarize political debates, create ideological divisions that cannot be respect-fully composed within democratic decision-making, and aim at defeating their enemies in-stead of striving for the common good. This anti-partisan perspective has been reinforced by the deliberative framework, according to which citizens should ground their claims in publicly justifiable arguments, assess political proposals on their merits, and critically dis-cuss with one another so as to identify what is best for the polity. The ideal political actors, according to this view, are independents, not partisans. In the past few years various scholars challenged this idea by holding that it does not distinguish partisanship from factional-ism. While the latter cannot be considered legitimate, the former ensures that citizens are motivated to exercise their political agency and grants discursive conditions that are necessary to publicly justify collective decisions. In this paper I will consider this defence of party spirits and claim that while it is undeniable that partisanship performs motivational and justificatory functions that are necessary for the proper working of a democratic system, it requires an account of political justification that is not compatible with traditional interpretations of deliberative ideal.
Type: Book Chapter
ISSN: 1825-5167
Appears in Collections:Etica & Politica / Ethics & Politics (2016) XVIII/1

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