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Tradition's Desire

The Politics of Culture in the Rape Trial of Jacob Zuma

Thembisa Waetjen and Gerhard Maré

This article examines the recent trial of ANC president Jacob Zuma, and how gender power was framed in respect to, and within, the politics of culture. The trial centred on allegations of rape by Zuma of an HIV positive woman many years his junior, who was also the daughter of a former anti-apartheid struggle comrade. All of these details were considered pertinent, not only to the legal debates about whether a crime had been committed, but also to the political debates raging around the nation's key challenges of high rates of sexual violence and the 'denialist' state response to devastating levels of HIV infection. Many Zuma supporters saw the accusation of rape as politically motivated and as evidence of an anti-Zuma conspiracy. In visibly smaller numbers, women's rights groups were present on the streets as well, trying to draw attention to the general problem of the nation's extraordinarily high rates of sexual violence and the general failure of the justice system to address cases of rape. The article argues that the fervour surrounding this trial, the burning political question of women's status was continually cast as a private matter: debates about relations between men and women came to be focused on issues of propriety, behaviour and etiquette rather than on questions about rights and power. In short, the privatisation of gender was effected through the politics of culture. As culture is politicised as a legal and secular 'right', gender is de-politicised to become a normatively 'private' and 'customary' domain. This is not merely a South African dilemma, but a dilemma which is con-concomitant to the social conditions of modernity itself.

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Belonging to Spontaneous Order

Hayek, Pluralism, Democracy

Stephanie Erev

welfare seem to be animated at least in part by a nihilistic resentment of difference. Another way to say this is that Hayek's hostility to shared purpose in public life seems to reflect a desire for a world imbued with intrinsic purposiveness, a world in

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Free from State Violence or Free to Comply?

A Revised Typology of Coercion and Repression in Liberal Democracies

Barbora Capinska

sides of the conflict. Curiously, their desire to “[integrate] research on personal integrity violations and negative sanctions … with work on counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, as well as protest policing and domestic spying … to embrace all of [state

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Ali Aslam, David McIvor, and Joel Alden Schlosser

orientation toward democratic renewal and desires for flight and refusal. Exploring the nuances of fugitivity can reconfigure the research agenda for democratic theory in four specific ways: by (1) challenging the existing idea of the democratic subject, (2

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Resist and Revivify

Democratic Theory in a Time of Defiance

Jean-Paul Gagnon and Emily Beausoleil

feeling the pinch. It is a life that uses interpersonal creativity to help others meet their needs and desires. Put together, Dewey’s resistance against types of violence that are harmful to democracy and his call to revivify the democratic way of life

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Avery Poole

; Diamond 2009 ; Dosch 2008 ; Horowitz 2013 ; Tomsa 2008 ). This is not to suggest that scholars do not identify difficulties in or obstacles to the process of democratization. They do, however, focus on a process—a movement toward a desired end-state of

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Lest We Forget (Matter)

Posthumanism, Memory, and Exclusion

Matthew Howard

socioeconomic structures that dictate where and how they find sustenance, satisfy their desires, or obtain the resources necessary for participating in political life” ( Coole and Frost 2010: 19) . The notion, then, that the human is a master of its surrounding

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Realizing Interspecies Democracy

The Preconditions for an Egalitarian, Multispecies, World

Sue Donaldson, Janneke Vink, and Jean-Paul Gagnon

the extent to which the government has consideration for the desires, wishes, and interests of the subject population, while the control population merely comes into view when discussing the more formal question of who should be checking and executing

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Little Phil

Changing the Relationship between Philanthropy and Democracy?

Joshua Murchie and Jean-Paul Gagnon

, and ensure that it meets their desired end? One possibility is for the big philanthropic foundations to standardize the use of deliberative citizens’ panels to explore what, for instance, Foundation X wants to achieve, or what the plutocrat whose

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Simon Tormey and Jean-Paul Gagnon

democratic sensibility, of their own needs, wishes, and desires. We’re at that pivot point now, which is why I use the term “postrepresentative democracy” in my book The End of Representative Politics (2015a). We are still working through the paradox of