Intellectuals and the Quest for a New Political Culture

By Pilar Damião de Medeiros.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The contemporary “global society” (Habermas) shows evidences of a new historical paradigm with multifarious – economical, social, cultural and political – implications. This paper tries to dissect, throughout different axes of analysis, the contradictions and puzzling aspects inherent to the global techno-economic status quo and the growing instrumental rationality (Horkheimer & Adorno). It also attempts to scrutinize cultural-political alternatives to the current “res publica mundialis”, which has created a hybrid public sphere devoid of critical consciousness and “cultural-political imagery”. In this context, the figure of the intellectual is contemplated as a “representative figure” (Saïd) with the “responsibility” to be engaged with the truth and sustain human liberty values, equality and participated democracy. Therefore, as autonomous and “attached/detached” social actors, the intellectuals face the challenge of resisting against commodity culture, to stimulate cultural dialogue between distinctive value clusters in our globalised society (Benhabib) and to alert the public and political spheres for the significance of a new “civilization leap” (Naïr, Morin). In a sense, this paper stresses the compromise of the intellectuals to think about new forms and the reforms of political culture and to promote a framework for political change concerning the crucial role of culture in the quest of a more pluralistic, but not hybrid and fragmented, “glocalized” democracy.

Keywords: Globalization, Paradigmatic Change, Intellectuals, Resistance, Political Culture

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 4, Issue 7, pp.153-158. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.116MB).

Dr. Pilar Damião de Medeiros

Assistant Professor, Sociology Department, Évora University, Évora, Évora, Portugal

Pilar Damião de Medeiros (Ph.D. Albert-Ludwigs-Universitaet Freiburg, Germany [2007] M.A. Queen’s University, Canada [2003] and B.A. Brock University, Canada [2001]) is currently an Assistant Professor at Évora University, Portugal and a member of NICPRI- Research Unit in Political Science and International Relations. Her field of specialization is Modern German Literature, Hermeneutics, Dialectics and Role Aesthetics and her current research interests are: 1) Global studies; 2) Intellectuals and Political Culture and 3) Mass culture.Pilar Damião de Medeiros is a member of NICPRI- Research Unit in Political Science and International Relations, financed by FCT (Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia, Portugal). Reference: FEDER/POCI 2010. This paper belongs to a research project entitled “Visions and Possibilities of a Global Citizenship in the 21st Century” [PTDC/CPJ-CPO/104241/2008].


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