Left and right in the economic crisis.
Journal of Political Ideologies, 18
Two decades after the Cold War, the political traditions of Left and Right were widely deemed to have fossilized. Many saw them as unable to express vital alternatives, and only distantly related to contemporary political life. This article examines how far this remains true in the light of more recent upheavals. It looks at the key divisions of opinion to have emerged from the economic crisis that broke in 2008, identifying important differences concerning in what sense it a crisis (the production of disorder vs. production of injustice) and how it can be explained (acts of moral or intellectual transgression vs. a pattern of adhesion to problematic doctrines and practices). It goes on to argue that these differences can be seen as extensions of older Left-Right dichotomies, albeit articulated with a second division between technical and normative reasoning. The article concludes with a discussion of the challenge political actors face in positioning themselves coherently according to these divisions.
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