What is democratic theory? In this article we treat it as a semiotic code – that is to say, a shared assumption – and argue that democratic theory enables people to think and talk about the idea(s) of democracy. Furthermore, the application of this specific code is highly political. For one, it is embedded in concrete contexts and discourses and used in arguments and narratives. In addition, the application of democratic theory has also substantial consequences on the lives of people. We illustrate this argument by reflecting briefly on Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address” and its recodification and consequences in different contexts.
Christian Ewert and Marion Repetti
From French Others to Othering Frenchness
democracy were later appropriated by colonial subjects and turned against their oppressors. Yet we know far less about how anti-imperialists constructed their own semiotic codes and discourses to depict the metropole. It is clear, for example, how imperial