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Robin Celikates (Philosophy/ASCA) has been awarded a fellowship from the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, New Jersey, for the 2018-19 academic year. Robin will be a member of the School of Social Science and work on his book project “Democratizing Disobedience: Towards a Critical Theory of Political Protest”.

Project summary

The main aim of this project is to develop a critical theory of ‘democratizing disobedience’ that bridges the gap between the rarely redeemed commitment of critical theory to be grounded in actual social struggles and the undertheorized transformative potential of civil disobedience.  This involves bringing two claims together: that disobedience is an essential part of struggles for democratization (‘from below’), and thus opens up one way to address the crisis of representative democracies without falling back into the non- or anti-democratic dynamics of right-wing populism, and that theorizing disobedience in a critical vein has to be democratized both methodologically and substantially in order to adequately grasp the democratizing potential of disobedience.