They Make Rants

This is a first-class rant by Levi Bryant, which frankly reads better than most people’s serious writings. The part on Habermas is about right. I’m not critiquing Habermas here because I don’t get the normative claims, and critiques of his work sometimes are analogous to misplaced critiques of the categorical imperative for being impractical. But good grief, he is impossible to teach. Think of his most accessible essays that you would use for students. Maybe the piece on German/EU federalism in Charles Taylor’s multiculturalism book? Let’s face it: it’s not at all good political science and as for its theoretical claims, self defeating. Instead of asking, as Levi notes Habermasians sometimes do, about the normative constraints we implicitly recognize when we begin to talk, how about asking those differences that initialize conversations in the first place? In other words, Habermas offers formal norms that, as many have noted, end up with universalizing content norms. Anyway, better to see Levi. Rant on…