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Deliberative democracy and dialogic democracy: law challenges in complexes societies according to Jürgen Habermas and Anthony Giddens

Grant number: 13/16383-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2013
Effective date (End): May 31, 2014
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Law - Theory of Law
Principal Investigator:Hélcio Ribeiro
Grantee:Hélcio Ribeiro
Host Investigator: Wanda Maria de Lemos Capeller
Host Institution: Faculdade de Direito (FD). Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie (UPM). Instituto Presbiteriano Mackenzie. São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense (Paris 10), France  


The research aims to make a comparative analysis between the deliberative theory of democracy from the perspective of Jürgen Habermas and the theory of dialogic democracy by Anthony Giddens. Both authors start from the assumption that the elitist model/aggregative conception that characterizes liberal/representative democracy is in crisis regarding the profound changes in the structure of complexes societies. According to Habermas the elitist model is responsible for the de-politicization of society and the decline of public sphere due to the colonization of the lifeworld as a result of administrative and economic systems. In this perspective, the recovery of public sphere involves the activation of civil society as a way of broadening formation of political will, an intersubjective perspective in which speakers seek consensus able to give greater legitimacy to decisions. Giddens criticizes Habermas's consensus view, considering attempts to recover the role of civil society linked to conservative positions that arise from the desire to restore the community. For the English sociologist, democracy in societies with a high degree of reflexivity, should be considered in areas where formal institutions are not normally present, such as everyday life, family and sexual relationships, social movements and globalists systems. Afterwards Giddens revised his position concerning civil society and this research has as an objective to analyses the role of civil society and social movements in the democratic development of complexes societies. The research will also perform a comparison between the two theories with regard to the role of law in democracies, given the high degree of reflexivity of complexes societies. Although Giddens takes into account more effectively the informal rules that enforces the individuals behavior in society, there are important points in his theory that may be relevant to the sociology of law. Wanda Maria Capeller, professor at the Université de Paris X, Nanterre and supervisor of this project, first explored the possibilities of Giddens theory to sociology of law in her recent book Relire Giddens: entre sociologie et politique, Paris, LGDJ, 2011. One of the main issues raised by the author is the relationship between law and politics since the theory of Anthony Giddens is rich in understanding the impact of new social movements and globalization on the individual's behavior and the traditional conception of citizenship. Critical theory has developed an analysis of capitalism still marked by fordist production while the current model points to a high degree of flexibility, individual autonomy and increased risks that could not be imagined fifty years ago. Thus the research seeks to examine the following: to analyze the validity and scope of the criticisms of Giddens to the distinction made by Habermas between work and interaction; to make a comparison between the deliberative and dialogical models in attempted to evaluate the role of social movements and the civil society; to analyze the contribution of both theories to sociological thoughts and legal scope for understanding the relationship between law and democracy in the brazilian context; to analyze the theory of structural duality of Giddens as a methodological resource to understand the unintended consequences of the legal and political actors behavior in the restructuring of institutions and the role assigned by the Habermas theory of communicative action to the law, which allows the development of communicative dialogue between systems and lifeworld. Analyzing the relevance of the criticisms of Giddens to Habermas and the possibility of incorporating the theory of structural duality of Giddens to increase law analysis made in the theory of communicative action by Habermas. (AU)

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