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Radical Philosophy Today

Volume 4, 2006

Philosophy Against Empire

Omar Dahbour
Pages 255-260

Is “Globalizing Democracy” Possible?

Comparing Carol Gould’s Globalizing Democracy and Human Rights to other recent discussions of global justice, Dahbour argues that her work offers two important theoretical departures: It grounds global rights and democracy along foundationalist rather than constructivist lines; and it rejects the notion that just global institutions require the equal input of all those affected by their activities, defending instead that only those engaged in the “common activity” of institutions should participate in the decision-making. On the basis of this common activity guideline, Dahbour argues against Gould that we should not move toward “globalizing democracy” (or political cosmopolitanism) because globalization has been mostly a project of U.S. Empire. Instead, furthering democracy and human rights requires the strengthening of local democracy and support of the global justice movement as an antiglobalization movement. [Abstract prepared by the Editors.]

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