- Four faces of political legitimacy: An analytical framework
- Award date
- 13 June 2014
- Number of pages
- Document type
- PhD thesis
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
This dissertation shows how the mainstream sociological and philosophical approaches to political legitimacy are limiting and distorting our understanding. It claims that we need an empirically oriented and subject-centred approach not unlike the one presented in Weber’s canonical work of almost a century ago. Weber’s understanding of politics, however, is too limited. By engaging in a critical discussion with leading sociologists and political theorists, this thesis provides a novel conceptualisation of political legitimacy more appropriate for understanding contemporary, ‘late modern’ politics and its crises. The aim, therefore, is to provide an analytical framework which updates Weber’s work for the 21st century and captures the distinct ways in which political legitimacy can be empirically analysed. The key insight structuring the main argument is that the way in which scholars perceive the nature of politics determines how they understand political legitimacy. Analysing politics respectively in terms of domination, conflict, coordination and argumentation, this dissertation provides ‘four faces’ of political legitimacy and presents a innovative, integrative approach.
The analysis is restrained from the beginning by three premises. First, this thesis aims for an empirical and not a normative understanding of political legitimacy. Second, it claims that political legitimacy should be understood from a subjective and actor-centred approach without denying, of course, its social essence. Third, a conception of political legitimacy needs to deal with the fact that there is no single essence of politics.
- Research conducted at: Universiteit van Amsterdam
Thesis (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Preface (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 1: Some analytical building blocks (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 2: An analytical framework between normative and empirical theory (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 3: Politics as domination: Weber’s world of duty (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 4: Politics as conflict: Support and dramaturgy (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 5: Politics as coordination: Luhmann’s world of contingency (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 6: Politics as coordination: Trust and its normative dimensions (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 7: Politics as argumentation: Habermas’ lifeworld (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Chapter 8: Politics as argumentation: Symbolic space of authority (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
Conclusion: An analytical framework (Embargo until 01 June 2019)
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