Arendt and political realism: towards a realist account of political judgement

Journal article


Vogler, Gisli and Tillyris, Demetris 2019. Arendt and political realism: towards a realist account of political judgement. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy. 24 (6), pp. 821-844. https://doi.org/10.1080/13698230.2019.1610843
AuthorsVogler, Gisli and Tillyris, Demetris
Abstract

This article argues that Hannah Arendt’s thought can offer significant insights on political judgement for realism in political theory. We identify a realist position which emphasises the need to account for how humans judge politically, contra moralist tendencies to limit its exercise to rational standards, but which fails to provide a sufficient conception of its structure and potential. Limited appeals to political judgement render the realist defence of the political elusive, and compromise the endeavour to offer a meaningful alternative to the moralist tendency to displace politics. The potential and limitations of realist discussions on judgement are made visible in relation to proto-realists Judith Shklar and Isaiah Berlin.

In seeking to enrich the realist conception of the political, the article introduces the displacement critique found in the neglected Arendtian ‘realism’. It also provides the foundations for a distinctly realist account of political judgement which, we argue, requires elaboration along two dimensions: the social coding of political judgement and the political capacities that help judgement build a suitable political sphere.

KeywordsSociology; Philosophy; Hannah Arendt; Political theory; Realism
Year2019
JournalCritical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy
Journal citation24 (6), pp. 821-844
PublisherTaylor & Francis
ISSN1369-8230
1743-8772
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/13698230.2019.1610843
Official URLhttps://doi.org/10.1080/13698230.2019.1610843
FunderH2020 European Research Council
Publication dates
Online25 Apr 2019
Print19 Sep 2021
Publication process dates
Deposited07 May 2019
Accepted17 Apr 2019
Accepted author manuscript
Output statusPublished
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