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The enigma of hegemony and the crisis of contemporary politics: the tense relationship between neoliberalism and democracy

Grant number: 22/07547-4
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2023
Effective date (End): December 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Political Science - Political Theory
Principal Investigator:Bernardo Ricupero
Grantee:Camila Massaro Cruz de Góes
Supervisor: Cristiano Gianolla
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: Universidade de Coimbra (UC), Portugal  
Associated to the scholarship:21/07189-8 - The enigma of hegemony: Gramsci and the place of politics in Francisco de Oliveira's thought, BP.PD


This research starts from the problem formulated throughout the 1990s by the Brazilian sociologist Francisco de Oliveira (1933-2019) about the consequences, in hegemonic terms, of the new times inaugurated by neoliberalism. The ongoing process shaped an enigma in this regard because, although it appeared to have finally achieved hegemony, it would actually indicate a renunciation of the project of universalizing bourgeois values - we would thus be "beyond hegemony, on this side of democracy". There was, therefore, an identification between the problem of hegemony and that of modern democracy, which, with the neoliberal advance, would come into question together. The incompatibility between the new form of bourgeois domination and democracy would, however, reach a new level with the crisis of the neoliberal system, when not only peripheral regions and recent democratization, but even central countries with a long democratic tradition, saw growth. Exponentially authoritarian alternatives. It starts from the hypothesis that the hegemonic enigma, as formulated by Oliveira in another historical period, persists to challenge contemporary theorists in their analysis of the global political crisis, with the permanence of the same Gramscian conceptual apparatus to interpret it being symptomatic. The post-doctoral internship will therefore aim to expand the theoretical and contextual scope of the research, based on a study of diagnoses that investigate the double crisis of democracy and neoliberalism from the notions of "hegemony", "crisis of hegemony” and "interregnum". For this, it is proposed to confront the theses of Chantal Mouffe, Nancy Fraser, Wolfgang Streeck and, with particular interest, those of Boaventura de Sousa Santos who, unlike the first, are not restricted to the European or North American context, but extends their analyzes for Brazil and Latin America. (AU)

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