Shifts in our communication infrastructures have reshaped the very possibilities of social order driven by markets and commercial exploitation.
Capitalism has become focused on expanding the proportion of social life that is open to data collection and processing – as if the social itself has become the new target of capitalism’s expansion.
Insulting Barack Obama made the headlines, but Rodrigo Duterte’s remarks referred to a long and dark history of US interference in the Philippines.
Narendra Shresthma, Mast Irham/EPA
The people of the Philippines and their president know all too well the hypocrisy of being lectured by the United States about violence, human rights and democracy.
Tea Party supporters have been demanding to be heard for a long time.
We are witnessing the global rise of populism. Once seen as a fringe phenomenon from another era or only certain parts of the world, populism is a mainstay of politics today across the globe.
Residents of a Manila neighbourhood gather at the scene of the killing of an alleged drug dealer by police.
EPA/Francis R. Malasig
To understand Rodrigo Duterte’s rise to power and the public support for killing drug dealers and users, we need to distinguish the empirical from the normative – the ‘what is’ from ‘what should be’.
Others might be more inspired by American democracy if the US were widely seen to be a just and tolerant society and its leading politicians were not loudmouthed xenophobes.
The value of democracy needs to be restated and defended, rather than presumed. In doing so, there is value in adopting a more tempered stance, one that understands its worth but also its flaws.
Some fear that Chinese investment will lead to a painful trade-off between Ukraine’s desperate economic needs and its long-standing democratic dream.
Ukraine desperately needs Chinese investment but, like many other countries in this position, this is giving rise to concerns about the consequences for its fragile democracy.
Do outdated fantasies of anarchism simply play into the agendas of the rich and privileged? Nuit debout in Paris, 2016.
Today’s anarchists should give up the fantasy of ‘abolishing the state’. That simply plays into the agenda of the rich and privileged.
‘Ownness’ is a form of freedom that profanes institutions and acts as though power no longer exists. The Berlin Wall, November 1989.
Between institutional collapse and false promises of utopia, people seek to define their own lives and their relations with others by thinking and acting as though power no longer existed.
Anarchism’s opposition to arbitrary power is often militant, but liberty is no simple thing.
Liberty is a political matter bound up with institutionalised struggles for equality among individuals, groups, networks and organisations. This is where the cult of the free individual falls down.
Anarchists once took constitutionalism very seriously and might well do so again to develop radical decision-making practices.
If anarchists reject private property and the state, they need to devise alternative, radical practices of power-sharing. Republican constitutionalism offers one way to think about this.
The people in a democracy can be likened to the cells in a jellyfish.
Mike Johnston/Wikipedia Commons
If democracy were an animal, which one would it be? This short play, set in an Australian pub, explores this question to contrast ways we understand democracy and our roles within it.
Without democratic reform, the time ahead for both Britain and the EU looks bleak indeed.
The Brexit vote was the outcome of the disillusionment and disengagement that have permeated the UK. Many Europeans share that mood, which is why both the UK and EU need radical democratic surgery.
Austrian Freedom Party presidential candidate Norbert Hofer took the far right to the brink of victory in the recent election.
Radical right populists are on the brink of power in Austria and making gains across the region. And the European leaders who once were willing to publicly condemn them are silent now.
UKIP leader Nigel Farage was an architect of Britain’s seismic decision to leave the European Union.
The populist appeal of simplistic answers to complex solutions is a challenge for political leaders.There are times when expertise and experience must prevail over the popular mood of the moment.
Democracy can only work if students realise the importance of active citizenship, but citizenship education has lost its way under David Cameron’s government.
UK schools introduced citizenship education in 2002, but early gains have been reversed. The state of democracy and the Brexit vote suggest the need for informed citizens has never been greater.
Donald Trump’s boastful and bullying leadership style encapsulates many of the worst features and sentiments of today’s world.
In a world out of balance, one in which arrogance and unaccountability combine in a corrosive synergy, humility can offer a powerful alternative vision of how to approach democratic government.
The political crisis surrounding the 2012 ousting of Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed led to a return to authoritarian rule.
Democracy did not fail in the Maldives because it clashed with Islam. Instead, a privileged and powerful elite helped topple the elected government, and nations that advocate democratic ideals did little to stop them.
Donald Trump is a spectre of things to come: of political performance in an age of projection rather than representation.
The faultlines in democratic politics are clear. On one side is a system of democracy that is bad at making people feel represented. On the other are anti-politician performers like Donald Trump.
There is no better alternative than the rise of the populist left for Europe and beyond.
The People's Assembly Against Austerity
The future of democracy depends on developing a left-wing populism that can revive public interest by mobilising political passions in the fight for an alternative to neoliberal de-democratisation.
The Irish government is presented with a difficult task of how to commemorate the Easter Rising, 100 years on.
Often it has been Ireland’s writers and artists that have called out the hopes and failures of national politics, holding the polity to account in the culture.