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By Jeremy Gilbert

Universal flooring is an leading edge exploration of the philosophical courting among collectivity, individuality, impact and company within the neoliberal period. Jeremy Gilbert argues that individualism is pressured upon us via neoliberal tradition, fatally proscribing our potential to flee the present difficulty of democratic politics.

The ebook asks how forces and ideas against neoliberal hegemony, and to the individualist culture in Western idea, could serve to guard a few thought of communality, and the way a ways we needs to settle for assumptions in regards to the nature of individuality and collectivity that are the legacy of an elitist culture. alongside how it examines diverse principles and practices of collectivity, from conservative notions of a hierarchical, patriarchal, homogenous neighborhood to the politics of 'horizontality' and 'the commons' that are on the middle of radical hobbies today.

Exploring this basic faultline in modern political fight, universal flooring proposes a appreciably non-individualist mode of imagining social lifestyles, collective creativity and democratic hazard.

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Extra resources for Common Ground: Democracy and Collectivity in an Age of Individualism

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35 Gilbert T01517 01 text 35 08/10/2013 08:11 common ground Long before the continental Enlightenment, Hobbes, like his fellow Englishman and near contemporary Francis Bacon (Bacon 2000), sought to refound an entire area of thought on the basis of rational observation and logical argument, dismissing centuries of previous political theory as based on little more than irrational supposition and traditional authority (Hobbes 1996: 27–33). For our purposes here, what is fascinating about Hobbes is that he argued from precisely the premises which I have just described, even though what he wanted to argue for was not some kind of libertarian society, but in fact the opposite.

These accounts, however, are far from contradictory. For example, Hardt and Negri pay little or no attention to the ideological dimension of contemporary culture, focussing almost entirely on general social 25 Gilbert T01517 01 text 25 08/10/2013 08:11 common ground tendencies and the political potentialities of the most technically and socially advanced capitalist forms. But it is easy enough to supplement their position with the following observation: the more capitalism is forced to organise, enable and harness the collective creativity of the multitudinous millions, the more ideological work it must do in order to prevent the democratic potential of the multitude from being realised.

This perspective offers a particular way of understanding the relationship between the history of modernity and that of the disciplinary institutions with which Foucault was concerned. Fundamental to Foucault’s account of the emergence of ‘disciplinary’ society is his observation that institutions such as the prison, the Victorian school, the army barracks, the asylum and the clinic all operate according to a segregative logic which works to divide and separate populations into individual, preferably non-communicating units.

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Common Ground: Democracy and Collectivity in an Age of Individualism by Jeremy Gilbert


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