The course runs daily from 10.00-13.30. Our time will be devoted to a combination of interactive lectures, general discussion and debate, and small-group activities.
11.30-12.00 Coffee break
The course draws on a range of texts: Howarth, Discourse, (Open University Press, 2000); Glynos and Howarth, Logics of Critical Explanation in Social and Political Theory (Routledge, 2007); Stavrakakis, Lacan & the Political (Routledge 1999); Laclau, On Populist Reason (Verso, 2005). It will also discuss material from recent and forthcoming publications, including Stavrakakis, Yannis, Populism, Anti-Populism and Crisis: The Populist Scandal, Palgrave, forthcoming.
No specialised background knowledge is presupposed in this course but it would be helpful if participants have some familiarity with basic social science theory. Participants will be expected to have read the assigned texts for each day’s sessions, and in order to facilitate this process, a course reader will be provided that contains the key readings for each day.
Participants are encouraged to submit a short 1,500 word outlines of their own research interests and projects, and the sorts of challenges being faced, methodological or otherwise. These outlines should be emailed to both the course instructors Jason Glynos (email@example.com) and Yannis Stavrakakis (firstname.lastname@example.org) at least one week before the start of the course, so that we can build them into the programme. Time is allocated at the end of each week for collective discussion of participant research topics and proposals.
WEEK 1 – Jason Glynos
DAY 1, SESSIONS 1 & 2
Poststructuralist Discourse Theory:
An introduction to key concepts in postmarxism and psychoanalysis
The first day’s sessions will provide some background on the development of poststructuralist discourse theory (PDT), paying special attention to the post-foundationalist and anti-essentialist impulses emphasized by many scholars inspired by deconstruction, postmarxism and psychoanalysis. We situate PDT in relation to a range of other discourse-oriented approaches to empirical research, considering too the challenges and tasks confronting it today in political theory and the social sciences. We also set out several core concepts and logics of poststructuralist discourse theory, such as discourse, contingency, dislocation, subjectivity, identity, and hegemony, at least as they have been developed by Laclau & Mouffe, as well as others who have engaged with their work. We will be revisiting these categories and logics throughout the course, in order to refine our understanding of them and probe the limits of their application. PDT also draws inspiration from psychoanalysis, appealing to key concepts such as split subjectivity and fantasy to supplement the focus on discourse and its post-marxist satellite concepts. Many scholars have drawn attention to the power symbols exert in social and political life. Like discourse, fantasy is a concept that, like rhetoric, myth, metaphor, and utopia, have generated many illuminating explanatory and interpretive insights with which to better understand the operation of this power. No doubt it is tempting to dismiss the fantasmatic aspects of social and political life as merely false representations of reality, but the normative and ideological significance of fantasy can be grasped differently. We close the day by offering a ‘taster’ perspective on how the concept of fantasy can be ‘operationalised’ for purposes of critical empirical research, suggesting ways to meet methodological challenges associated with this task, and illustrating this process with reference to a case study.
Howarth, D. and Y. Stavrakakis (2000) ‘Introduction’, in Howarth, D., A.J. Norval and Y. Stavrakakis, Discourse Theory and Political Analysis, Ch.1.
Laclau, E., & C. Mouffe, Hegemony and Socialist Strategy (London: Verso, 1985, 2001 2nd Edition), Ch. 3.
Howarth, D., Discourse, Ch. 6.
Laclau, E., ‘Discourse’ in Goodin, Robert A., and Philip Pettit, eds., A Companion to Contemporary Political Philosophy (Oxford: Blackwell, 1993) pp. 431-437.
Glynos, J., Howarth, D., Norval, A., and Speed, E. (2009) ‘Discourse Analysis: Varieties and Methods’, ESRC National Centre for Research Methods, NCRM/014, http://eprints.ncrm.ac.uk/796/1/discourse_analysis_NCRM_014.pdf
Laclau, E. “Philosophical roots of discourse theory”, available online: http://naqdy.org/docs/2008/Philosophical_roots_of_discourse_theory.Ernesto_Laclau.sp.2008_2.pdf
Žižek, S. (1990) ‘Beyond Discourse-analysis’, in E. Laclau, New Reflections on the Revolution of Our Time, London: Verso.
Chang, W.-Y. and Glynos, J. (2011) ‘Ideology and Politics in the Popular Press’, in Dahlberg, L. and Phelan, S. (eds) Discourse Theory and Critical Media Politics, London: Palgrave-Macmillan
O. Marchart, Post-foundational Political Thought (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2007), Introduction, Chapters 1, 2, 6, 7.
Laclau, E. (2006) ‘Ideology and Post-Marxism’, Journal of Political Ideologies, 11(2): 103-114.
Laclau, E., C. Mouffe (1985): Hegemony & Socialist Strategy, London: Verso.
Howarth, D. Discourse (Buckingham: Open University Press, 2000), Introduction & Chapters 3-7.
D. Howarth, ‘Discourse Theory and Political Analysis’ in E. Scarborough and E. Tanenbaum (eds), Research Strategies in the Social Sciences (Oxford: OUP. 1998), Chapter 12.
Stavrakakis, Y. (1999) Lacan and the Political, London: Routledge.
Žižek, S. (1989) The Sublime Object of Ideology, London: Verso.
“Introduction”, in Critchley, S., Marchart, O. (eds.) (2004), Laclau. A Critical Reader, London/New York: Routledge., pp.1-14
Torfing, J. (1999), New Theories of Discourse (Oxford: Blackwell), pp. 10-77; 81-100; 101-131.
Laclau, Ernesto, ed., The Making of Political Identities (London: Verso, 1994), especially the Introduction.
C. Mouffe, On the Political (London: Routledge, 2005).
Wetherell, M. (1998) ‘Positioning and Interpreting Repertoires: Conversation Analysis and Post-structuralism in Dialogue’, Discourse and Society 9(3): 387-412.
Fairclough, N. (2000), New Labour, New Language?, 21-50.
Critchley, S., ‘Is there a Normative Deficit in the Theory of Hegemony?’ in S. Critchley and O. Marchart (eds) Laclau: A Critical Reader (London: Palgrave, 2004).
Townshend, J. (2003) ‘Laclau’s and Mouffe’s Hegemonic Project – The Story so Far …’, British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 5 (1), pp 129-142.
Simon, R. (1991), Gramsci’s Political Thought: An Introduction, pp.11-42, 59-77, 91-99.
Saussure, F. (1983), Course in General Linguistics, Chicago: Open Court, pp. 65-69, pp.110-129.
Derrida, J. ‘Structure, Sign and Play in the Human Sciences’, in Writing and Difference (London: Routledge).
Derrida, J. Positions (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1981).
Derrida, J. Of Grammatology (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1974), Part 1.
Glynos, J. (2001) ‘The Grip of Ideology’, Journal of Political Ideologies, 6(2): 191-214.
Glynos, J. (2014) ‘Hating Government and Voting Against One’s Interests: Self-Transgression, Enjoyment, Critique’, Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 19(2): 179-189.
Glynos, J. (2014) ‘Neoliberalism, Markets, Fantasy: The Case of Health and Social Care’, Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 19(1): 5-12.
Culler, J. On Deconstruction, Chapter 2.
Gasché, R. The Tain of the Mirror, Chapter 8.
Critchley, S. The Ethics of Deconstruction (Oxford: Basil Blackwell).
Mouffe, C. (2000), The Democratic Paradox, pp.108-128.
Laclau, E. New Reflections on the Revolution of Our Time (London: Verso, 1990), pp. 3-59.
Laclau, Ernesto, ‘Why Do Empty Signifiers Matter to Politics?’ in his Emancipation(s) (London: Verso, 1996), pp. 36-46.
Laclau E. and C. Mouffe, ‘Post-Marxism without Apologies’, New Left Review, 1987, no. 166, pp. 79-106. (Reproduced in Laclau, E. New Reflections on the Revolution of our Time).
Laclau, Ernesto, ‘Universalism, Particularism, and the Question of Identity’ in his Emancipation(s) (London: Verso, 1996), pp. 20-36.
DAY 2, SESSIONS 3 & 4
Logics of Critical Explanation: A Framework for the Application of Discourse Theory
In these sessions we explore the role of logics – as distinct from meanings and mechanisms — as the basic units of social explanations. We situate the concept of logics within a post-structuralist context. This involves briefly and critically interrogating two opposed responses to the causal law model: the ‘interpretive turn’ (e.g. Charles Taylor; Mark Bevir and Rod Rhodes) and the recourse to ‘causal mechanisms’ (e.g. Roy Bhaskar; Jon Elster). We then elaborate an alternative social ontology, which is premised on the central poststructuralist idea of radical contingency, and then introduce three types of logic – social, political, and fantasmatic – as the basis of a ‘logics approach’ to critical explanation. We illustrate the way these logics can be understood in relation to the higher education reforms and responses to the financial crisis of 2007-8 in the UK.
Glynos, J. and Howarth, D. (2007) Logics of Critical Explanation, Introduction, Chapters 4 & 5.
Laclau, Ernesto, ‘The Impossibility of Society’ (1991) 15(1/3) Canadian Journal of Political and Social Theory 24, reproduced in Laclau, E. New Reflections on the Revolution of our Time.
Laclau, Ernesto, ‘Why Do Empty Signifiers Matter to Politics?’ in his Emancipation(s) (London: Verso, 1996), pp. 36-46.
Glynos, J., Klimecki, R., and Willmott, H. (2012) ‘Cooling Out the Marks: The Ideology and Politics of the Financial Crisis’, Journal of Cultural Economy, 5(3): 297-320.
Glynos, J. and Howarth, D. (2008) ‘Critical Explanation in Social Science: A Logics Approach’, Swiss Journal of Sociology, 34(1): 5-35.
J. Glynos, and Howarth, D. (2008) ‘Structure, Agency and Power in Political Analysis: Beyond Contextualized Self-Interpretations’, Political Studies Review, 6: 155-169.
C. Taylor, ‘Self-interpreting Animals’, in C. Taylor, Human Agency and Language: Philosophical Papers 1 (Cambridge: CUP, 1985), Chapter 2.
C. Taylor, ‘Interpretation and the Sciences of Man,’ Review of Metaphysics, Volume 25, no 1 (Sept 1971), 3-51. (Reprinted in C. Taylor, Philosophy and the Human Sciences 2, Chapter 1.)
J. Elster, ‘A Plea for Mechanisms’, in his Alchemies of the Mind: Rationality and the Emotions (Cambridge: CUP, 1999).
Laclau, E. and C. Mouffe ‘Post-Marxism without Apologies’, New Left Review, 166 (November/December 1987). (Reprinted in Laclau, E. New Reflections on the Revolution of Our Time (London: Verso, 1990), Chapter 4.)
DAY 3, SESSIONS 5 & 6
Applying Discourse Theory:
• Problematization, Articulation, Critique;
• Rhetorical and Ethnographic Dimensions of Critical Empirical Research
In these sessions we use the category of logics introduced the previous day to reflect on the way we should understand the process by which we link together different elements (theoretical concepts and empirical features) into concrete accounts of problematized phenomena, emphasizing the role played by the researcher’s judgement in processes of articulation as a particular mode of explanation, and foregrounding thereby the critical dimension of the research process. We will also explore the rhetorical dimension of political analysis, especially in relation to political speeches, with the aim of linking such analyses to the logics approach. We thus start engaging in the messy processes of problematization, articulation, and critique by deploying logics in the context of concrete speeches, such as Obama’s famous race speech. We conclude with an exploration of how the ethnographic dimension of research can be situated within a PDT framework.
J. Glynos and D. Howarth, Logics of Critical Explanation (Abingdon: Routledge, 2007), Chapter 6.
Bacchi, C. (2012). “Why Study Problematizations? Making Politics Visible.” Open Journal of Political Science 2(1): 1-8.
Finlayson, A. (2007) ‘From Beliefs to Arguments: Interpretive Methodology and Rhetorical Political Analysis’, British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 9(4): 545-563; focusing especially on 554ff.
Obama speech on race (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/18/us/politics/18text-obama.html)
Karakatsanis, L. (2012) ‘Interdisciplinarity and ‘Field Research’ Methods in Discourse Studies: Political Discourse Theory, Cultural Critique and the ‘Gift’ of an Ethnographic Ethos’, Working Paper in Ideology and Discourse Analysis, 27: 1-29.
Howarth, D. Discourse, Chapters 3 & 4.
Bacchi, C. (2015) ‘The Turn to Problematization: Political Implications of Contrasting Interpretive and Poststructuralist Adaptations’, Open Journal of Political Science 5: 1-12.
Schwartz-Shea, and Yanow, D. (2012) Interpretive Research Design, London: Routledge.
Wodak, R. and Krzyzanowski, M. (2008) Qualitative Discourse Analysis in the Social Sciences, New York: Palgrave.
Martin, J. (2014) Politics and Rhetoric: A Critical Introduction, Abingdon: Routledge.
Finlayson, A. (2012) ‘Rhetoric and the Political Theory of Ideologies’, Political Studies, 60(4): 751-767.
Finlayson, A. .(2013) ‘From Blue to Green and Everything in Between’, BJPIR, 15: 70-88.
Atkins, J. and Finlayson, A. (2013) ‘… a 40-year Old Black Man Made the Point to Me: Everyday Knowledge and the Performance of Leadership in Contemporary British Politics’, Political Studies 61(1): 161-177.
D. Howarth & S. F. Griggs (2006) ‘Metaphor, Catachresis and Equivalence: The Rhetoric of Freedom to Fly in the Struggle over Aviation Policy in the United Kingdom’, Policy and Society (2006), Vol. 25, No. 2, pp. 23-46.
S. F. Griggs and D. Howarth, ‘Populism, Localism and Environmental Politics: The Logic and Rhetoric of the Stop Stansted Expansion Campaign in the United Kingdom’, Planning Theory, (2008), Vol. 7, No. 2, pp. 123-44.
Clifford Geertz, C. (1973) The Interpretation of Cultures (New York: Basic Books), Chapter 1: ‘Thick Description’.
Winch, P. (1974) ‘Understanding a Primitive Society’, in B. Wilson (ed.) Rationality, Oxford: Basil Blackwell.
Marcus, George. 1995. ‘Ethnography in/of the world System: The emergence of multi-sited Ethnography’. Annual Review of Anthropology, 24: 95-117.
DAY 4, SESSIONS 7 & 8
Applying Discourse Theory:
• Participatory and Psychosocial Dimensions of Research;
• Retroduction & Research Strategy & the Case of Critical Policy Studies
On day 4 we investigate further the implications of adopting an ethnographic sensibility and taking subjectivity seriously in the research process. We explore, in particular, two important dimensions of critical empirical research: the participatory and psychosocial dimensions. Finally, as a way of tying together key aspects of the course so far, we revisit key themes from debates in the philosophy of science and social science in order to show how the various elements of the social science research process can be understood as part of a retroductive ‘cycle’ of explanation and reasoning. We first discuss the category of retroduction (as developed by philosophers of science Charles Sanders Peirce and Norbert Hanson), and contrast this form of reasoning with induction and deduction. Retroduction is then connected – via the ‘retroductive cycle’ – to concerns in the philosophy of social science and to issues in the study of social and political phenomena. We then discuss these themes in the context of more general methodological debates linked to the case study approach, particularly in relation to issues of generalization, comparison, and validity. Time permiting, we explore some concrete cases in which PDT has been operationalized in the field of critical policy studies.
Cameron, J. and Gibson, K. (2005) ‘Participatory Action Research in a Poststructuralist Vein’, Geoforum 36: 315-331.
Miller, C., Hoggett, P., and Mayo, M. (2008) ‘Psycho-social Perspectives in Policy and Professional Practice Research’, in Cox, P., Gersen, T. and Green, R. (eds) Qualitative Research & Social Change: UK and Other European Contexts, Basingstoke: Palgrave.
J. Glynos and D. Howarth, Logics of Critical Explanation (Abingdon: Routledge, 2007), Chapter 1.
J. R. Feagin, A. M. Orum, and G. Sjoberg, A Case for the Case Study (Chapel Hill: Univ. of N. Carolina, 1991), Chapter 1.
B. Flyvbjerg, Making Social Science Matter (CUP, 2001), Chapter 6.
J. Glynos and D. Howarth, Logics of Critical Explanation (Abingdon: Routledge, 2007), pp. 187-191, 201-207.
Glynos, J., Klimecki, R., and Willmott, H. (2015) ‘Logics in Policy and Practice: A Critical Nodal Analysis of the UK Banking Reform Process’, Critical Policy Studies, 9(4): 393-415.
Glynos, J., Speed, E. and West, K. (2015) ‘Logics of Marginalisation in Health and Social Care Reform: Integration, Choice and Provider-blind Provision’ Critical Social Policy, 35(1): 45-68
Glynos, J. and Speed, E. (2012) ‘Varieties of Co-production in Public Services: Timebanks in a UK Health Policy Context’, Critical Policy Studies, 6(4): 402-433.
Gibson-Graham, J. K. (2006) Postcapitalist Politics (London: University of Minnesota Press, Chapter 3.
Ozselcuk, Ceren, ‘Mourning, Melancholy, and the Politics of Class Transformation’ Rethinking Marxism (2006) 18(2): 225-240.
Hollway, W., and Jefferson, T. (2013) Doing Qualitative Research Differently, 2nd Edition, London: Sage, ‘New Developments since 2000’.
Healy, S. (2010) ‘Traversing Fantasies, Activating Desires’, The Professional Geographer, 62(4): 496-506.
Frosh, S. (2010) Psychoanalysis Outside the Clinic, London: Palgrave Macmillan.
Branney, P. (2008) ‘Subjectivity, Not Personality: Combining Discourse Analysis and Psychoanalysis’, Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 2(2): 574-90.
Lapping, C. (2013) ‘Which Subject, Whose Desire? The Constitution of Subjectivity and the Articulation of Desire in the Research Process, Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 18(4): 368-385.
Lapping, C. (2011) Psychoanalysis in Social Research, London: Routledge.
Walkerdine, V., Lucey, H. and Melody, J. (2002) ‘Subjectivity and Qualitative Method’, in May, T. (ed.) Qualitative Research in Action, London: Sage.
I. Shapiro, ‘Problems, Methods, and Theories in the Study of Politics, or: What’s Wrong with Political Science and What to do About it’, in I. Shapiro, R. M. Smith, and T. E. Masoud (eds) (2004) Problems and Methods in the Study of Politics (Cambridge: CUP, 2004).
W. Connolly, ‘Method, Problem, Faith’ in I. Shapiro, R. M. Smith, and T. E. Masoud (eds) (2004) Problems and Methods in the Study of Politics (Cambridge: CUP, 2004).
C. Ragin, ‘Turning the Tables: How Case-Oriented Research Challenges Variable-Oriented Research’, in Brady, H. and Collier, D. (eds) (2004) Rethinking Social Inquiry, Lanham MD: Rowman & Littlefield, Chapter 8.
A. O. Hirshman, ‘The Search for Paradigms as a Hindrance to Understanding’ in P. Rabinow and William M. Sullivan, Interpretive Social Science (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1987), pp. 177-194.
Bevir, M. and Kedar, A. (2008) ‘Concept Formation in Political Science: An Anti-Naturalist Critique of Qualitative Methodology’, Perspectives on Politics, 6(3): 503-517.
Hajer, M. A. (2009) Authoritative Governance: Policy-Making in the Age of Mediatization, Oxford: OUP.
Schram, S. F., and Caterino, B. (eds) (2006) Making Political Science Matter, New York: NYUP.
Griggs, S. and D. Howarth (2011) “Phronesis, Logics, and Critical Policy Analysis: Heathrow’s ‘Third Runway’ and the Politics of Sustainable Aviation in the UK”, in T. Landman and S. Schram (eds) Real Social Science, Cambridge: CUP.
DAY 5, SESSIONS 9 & 10
Applying Discourse Theory:
• ‘Tying up Loose Ends’;
• Participant Case Studies
Day 5 is devoted to tying up loose ends and consolidating our work and findings from earlier sessions in the first week of the course. Day 5 also offers the first of two opportunities to relate participant research to the concepts and themes of the course so far (the second opportunity being on day 10 of the course). Today’s sessions also act as a forum to raise and discuss general issues and questions arising out of earlier sessions in the week.
WEEK 2 – Yannis Stavrakakis
DAY 6, SESSIONS 11 & 12
Discourse and Affect: Discourse Theory Embraces Psychoanalysis
As we have seen, already from its inception, discourse theory has been marked, among other influences and sources of inspiration, by the psychoanalytic theories of Freud and Lacan. In its paradigmatic formulation in Hegemony and Socialist Strategy, Laclau and Mouffe draw on the psychoanalytic conceptual apparatus enlisting, among others, Freud’s understanding of overdetermination as well as Lacan’s theory of the ‘point de capiton’, which will be recast as the ‘nodal point’ instituting a discursive articulation, one of the most central concepts of an Essex School type of discourse analysis. This influence will gradually increase as Laclau will progressively engage in a serious dialogue with psychoanalytic political theory. We purport to follow and reconstruct the way in which, through this exchange, discourse theory has managed to shift its attention from a narrow focus on representation to an understanding of hegemony that takes fully into account the affective dimension, the dimension of enjoyment (jouissance). Finally we discuss recent critiques of discourse theory developed under the rubric of post-hegemony in order to show how they disavow this radical embrace of psychoanalysis and affectivity.
Glynos, Jason & Stavrakakis, Yannis (2003) ‘Encounters of the Real Kind: Sussing Out the Limits of Laclau’s Embrace of Lacan’, Journal for Lacanian Studies, 1(1), pp. 110–28.
Glynos, Jason & Stavrakakis, Yannis (2010) ‘Politics and the Unconscious – An Interview with Ernesto Laclau’, Subjectivity, 3, pp. 231-244.
Laclau, Ernesto (2003) ‘Discourse and jouissance: A reply to Glynos and Stavrakakis’, Journal for Lacanian Studies, 1(2), pp. 278–85.
Laclau, Ernesto (2004) ‘Glimpsing the Future: A Reply’, in Critchley, Simon & Marchart, Oliver (eds) Laclau: A Critical Reader, London: Routledge, pp. 279–328.
Lash, Scott (2007) ‘Power after Hegemony: Cultural Studies in Mutation?’, Theory, Culture and Society, 24(3), pp. 55-78.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2007) ‘Laclau with Lacan on Jouissance: Negotiating the Affective Limits of Discourse’, in Stavrakakis, Yannis, The Lacanian Left, Albany: SUNY Press, chapter 2, pp. 66-108.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2014) ‘Hegemony or Post-hegemony?: Discourse, Representation and the Revenge(s) of the Real’, in Alexandros Kioupkiolis & Giorgos Katsambekis (eds) Radical Democracy and Collective Movements Today: The Biopolitics of the Multitude Versus the Hegemony of the People, Farnham: Ashgate, pp. 111-132.
Althusser, Louis (1999) Writings on Psychoanalysis: Freud and Lacan, New York: Columbia University Press.
Beasley-Murray, Jon (2010) Posthegemony, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Biglieri, Paula and Perello, Gloria (2011) ‘The Names of the Real in Laclau’s Theory: Antagonism, Dislocation and Heterogeneity’, Folosofski Vestnik, XXXII(2), pp. 47-64.
Day, Richard (2005) Gramsci is Dead, London: Pluto Press.
Evans, Dylan (1996) An Introductory Dictionary of Lacanian Psychoanalysis, London: Routledge.
Gordillo, Gaston (2011) ‘Affective Hegemonies’, http://posthegemony.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/gordillo_hegemonies.pdf
Johnson, Richard (2007) ‘Post-hegemony? I Don’t Think So’, Theory, Culture and Society, 24(3), pp. 95-110.
Laclau, Ernesto (1990) New Reflections on the Revolution of our Time, London: Verso.
Laclau, Ernesto (2005) On Populist Reason, London: Verso.
Laclau, Ernesto & Mouffe, Chantal (1985) Hegemony and Socialist Strategy, London: Verso, ch. 3.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (1999) Lacan and the Political, London: Routledge.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2000) ‘Laclau with Lacan: Comments on the Relation between Discourse Theory and Lacanian Psychoanalysis’, (a): the journal of culture and the unconscious, 1(1), pp. 134–53.
Thrift, Nigel (2008) Non-representational Theory, London: Routledge.
Zizek, Slavoj (1990) ‘Beyond Discourse Analysis’, appendix in Laclau, Ernesto, New Reflections on the Revolution of Our Time, London: Verso.
DAY 7, SESSIONS 13 & 14
Applying Discourse Theory: Organisation Studies
Both poststructuralist discourse theory and psychoanalysis have been increasingly utilized within organisation studies. In particular, a whole area of critical management studies has emerged, determined to draw out the implications of the work of Foucault, Lacan, Laclau and others for a rigorous analysis of the ways in which relations of power and domination have developed within contemporary organisations through processes of ideological and biopolitical control. We focus on the contributions of a Lacan-inspired discourse-theoretical perspective in accounting for the current mutations of late capitalist societies, intervening in the long-standing debate on the two spirits of capitalism and its psycho-social dimensions. Such an approach can illuminate the (negative) dialectic between subject and organized Other and account for obedience and attachment to organized frameworks of social life in innovative ways, focusing on the dialectic between the coercive and the symbolic presuppositions of authority, but also by exploring the role of fantasy and enjoyment in sustaining hegemonic orders and in neutralizing resistance. We highlight – among others – the crucial role of debt and relations of indebtedness in securing subjective and collective compliance, discussing examples from the post-2008 European crisis.
Contu, Alessia and Willmott, Hugh (2006) ‘Studying Practice: Situating Talking About Machines’, Organization Studies, 27(12), pp. 1769-1782.
Fleming, Peter and Spicer, Andre (2003) ‘Working at a Cynical Distance: Implications for Power, Subjectivity and Resistance’, Organization, 10(1), pp. 157-179.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2010) ‘Symbolic Authority, Fantasmatic Enjoyment and the Spirits of Capitalism: Genealogies of Mutual Engagement’, in Carl Cederström & Casper Hoedemaekers (eds) Lacan and Organization, London: MayFlyBooks, pp. 59-100.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2013) ‘Dispatches from the Greek Lab: Metaphors, Strategies and Debt in the European Crisis’, Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society, 18(3), pp. 313-324.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2014) ‘Debt Society: Psychosocial Aspects of the (Greek) Crisis’, in Kate Kenny & Marianna Fotaki (eds) The Psychosocial and Organization Studies: Affect at Work, Houndmills: Palgrave, pp. 33-59.
Cederström, Carl & Hoedemaekers, Casper (eds) Lacan and Organization, London: MayFlyBooks.
Cederstrom, Carl and Grassman, Rickard (2008) ‘The Masochistic Reflexive Turn’, ephemera, 8(1), pp. 41-57.
Cederstrom, Carl and Willmott, Hugh (2007) ‘Desiring Agency’, Working paper 3, Lund: Lund Institute of Economic Research.
Clegg, Stuart (1989) Frameworks of Power, London: Sage.
Contu Alessia (2008) ‘Decaf Resistance: On Misbehavior, Cynicism and Desire in Liberal Workplaces’, Management Communication Quarterly, 21, pp. 364-379.
Contu, Alessia and Willmott, Hugh (2005) ‘You Spin me Around: The Realist Turn on Organization and Management Studies’, Journal of Management Studies, 42(8), pp. 1646-1662.
de la Boétie, Étienne  (1942) Discourse on Voluntary Servitude, New York: Columbia University Press.
Hoedemakers, Casper (2008) Performance, Pinned Down: A Lacanian Analysis of Subjectivity at Work, Rotterdam: ERIM, 2008.
Jones, Campbell and Spicer, Andre (2005) ‘The Sublime Object of Entrepreneurship’, Organization, 12(2), pp. 223-246.
Lukes, Steven (2005) Power: A Radical View, second edition, London: Palgrave-Macmillan.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2008) ‘Subjectivity and the Organized Other: Between Symbolic Authority and Fantasmatic Enjoyment’, Organization Studies, 29(7), pp. 1037-1059.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2012) ‘Beyond the Spirits of Capitalism? Prohibition, Enjoyment and Social Change’, Cardozo Law Review, vol. 33, no. 6, pp. 2289-2306, http://www.cardozolawreview.com/content/33-6/Stavrakakis.33-6.pdf
Glynos, J. (2011) ‘On the Ideological and Political Significance of Fantasy in the Organization of Work’, Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society, 16(4): 373-393.
Glynos, J. (2008) ‘Ideological Fantasy at Work’, Journal of Political Ideologies, 13(3): 275-296. Selected and reproduced in the multi-volume business and management collection, edited by Mats Alvesson and Hugh Willmott (2011) Critical Management Studies, London: Sage.
DAY 8, SESSIONS 15 & 16
Applying Discourse Theory: Theorising Populism
Populism has preoccupied political studies throughout the twentieth century. Echoing more traditional populist mobilizations (the People’s Party in the 1890s in the US, Russian Narodnichestvo and traditional Latin American populisms in the 1940s and 1950s), the last twenty years have been marked by a resurgence of populist phenomena, especially in Europe (extreme right-wing populism in France, Austria, the Netherlands and elsewhere), Latin America (Chavismo in Venezuela, Kirchnerismo in Argentina, etc.) and, more recently, the US (Tea Party, Occupy). How can political research respond to the challenge posed by such developments that often monopolize the daily agenda of the media and touch on the very quality of democracy? In these sessions we focus on the contribution of poststructuralist discourse theory on the theorisation of populism. In fact, populism constitutes the ground on which this approach had been initially conceived and to which it inevitably returns. The experience of Argentinian peronism triggered Laclau’s theoretical trajectory and his embrace of hegemony theory in the 1970s and it is to populism he will return in his 2005 Magnum Opus, On Populist Reason. We follow this conceptual trajectory highlighting the way it has influenced the new mainstream in populism studies (Canovan, Mudde & Kaltwasser, etc.).
Canovan, M. (1999) ‘Trust the People! Populism and the Two Faces of Democracy’, Political Studies, XLVII, pp. 2-16.
Laclau, Ernesto (1977) Politics and Ideology in Marxist Theory: Capitalism, Fascism, Populism, London: New Left Books, chapter on populism.
Laclau, Ernesto (1980) ‘Populist Rupture and Discourse’, Screen Education, 34, pp. 87-93.
Laclau, E. ‘Populism : What’s in a Name?’, available online at http://www.scribd.com/doc/39427519/Populism-What-s-in-a-Name-Ernesto-Laclau-2005#scribdStavrakakis, Yannis (2004) ‘Antinomies of Formalism: Laclau’s Theory of Populism and the Lessons from Religious Populism in Greece’, Journal of Political Ideologies, 9(3), pp. 253-267.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2014) ‘The Return of “the People”: Populism and Anti-Populism in the Shadow of the European Crisis’, Constellations, 21(4), pp. 505-517.
Canovan, Margaret (1981) Populism, London: Junction Books.
Canovan, Margaret (1982) ‘Two Strategies for the Study of Populism’, Political Studies, 30(4), pp. 544-552.
Howarth, David and Stavrakakis, Yannis (2000) ‘Introducing Discourse Theory and Political Analysis’, in D. Howarth, A. J. Norval and Y. Stavrakakis, Discourse Theory and Political Analysis (Manchester: Manchester University Press. Several chapters in this book deploy Laclau’s conceptualization of political frontiers in the analysis of concrete cases.
Laclau, Ernesto (2005) On Populist Reason, London: Verso.
Mudde, C. (2007) Populist Radical Right Parties in Europe, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Norval, Aletta (2012) ‘”Writing a name in the sky”: Rancière, Cavell and the possibility of egalitarian inscription’, American Political Science Review, pp. 1-17.
Panizza, F. (2005) Populism and the Mirror of Democracy, London: Verso.
POPULISMUS (2014) ‘Methodological Orientation’, http://www.populismus.gr/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/workshop-report-final-upload.pdfRancière, Jacques (1999) Disagreement, Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press, especially chapters 1-3.
Rancière, Jacques (2007) The Hatred of Democracy, London: Verso.
Taggart, P. (2000) Populism, Buckingham: Open University Press.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2014) ‘The European Populist Challenge’, Annals of the Croatian Political Science Association, 10(1), pp. 25-39.
Relevant material is also accessible through the POPULISMUS Observatory:
DAY 9, SESSIONS 17 & 18
Applying Discourse Theory: Analysing Populism in Europe and Latin America
Apart from influencing mainstream approaches to populism, Laclau’s formal, discursive perspective has allowed a thorough registering of the fluidity and variability of populist articulations (left-wing and right-wing, exclusionary and inclusionary) and an awareness of the discursive and affective factors implicated in the emergence, investment and hegemonic success of populist discourses. It has also highlighted the constitutive dialectic between crisis conjunctures and populist mobilisations. This orientation has been recently applied in a variety of concrete analyses of empirical cases that, focusing mainly on left-wing populist movements and governments in crisis-ridden Southern Europe (Greece and Spain) as well as in Latin America, have put into question the euro-centric association of populism with the extreme right, offering new avenues in populism research.
Mazzolini, Samuele (2015) ‘Left-wing Populism in Ecuador: Preliminary Notes on the Potentialities and Risks of Constructing a “People”’, POPULISMUS Working Papers, no. 1, http://www.populismus.gr/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/WPs1-mazzolini.pdf.
Moffitt, Benjamin (2015) ‘How to Perform Crisis: A Model for Understanding the Key Role of Crisis in Contemporary Populism’, Government and Opposition, 50(2), pp. 189-217.
Mudde, Cas and Rovira Kaltwasser, Cristobal (2013) ‘Exclusionary vs. Inclusionary Populism: Comparing Contemporary Europe and Latin America’, Government and Opposition, 48(2), pp. 147-174.
Stavrakakis, Yannis & Katsambekis, Giorgos (2014) ‘Left-wing Populism in the European Periphery: The Case of SYRIZA’, Journal of Political Ideologies, 19(2), pp. 119-142.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2015) ‘Populism in Power: SYRIZA’s Challenge to Europe’, Juncture, 21(4), pp. 273-280.
Biglieri, Paula & Perello, Gloria (2007) En el Nombre del Pueblo: La Emergencia del Populismo Kirchnerista, San Martin: UNSAM.
Brading, Ryan (2013) Populism in Venezuela, London: Routledge.
Breaugh, Martin (2013) The Plebeian Experience, New York: Columbia University Press.
Caiani, Manuela & Della Porta, Donatella (2011) ‘The Elitist Populism of the Extreme Right’, Acta Politica, 46, pp. 180-202.
Critchley, Simon (2015) ‘“The European Union has a deficit of populism”. An interview with Professor Simon Critchley’, POPULISMUS Interventions, no. 1, http://www.populismus.gr/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/interventions1-critchley.pdf.
Crouch, Colin (2004) Post-Democracy, Cambridge: Polity.
De la Torre Carlos (ed.) (2015) The Promise and Perils of Populism, Lexington: Kentucky University Press.
De Vos, Patrick (2002) ‘The Sacralisation of Consensus and the Rise of Right-Wing Populism in Flanders’, Studies in Social and Political Thought, 7, pp. 3-29.
Hawkins, Kirk (2010) Venezuela’s Chavismo and Populism in Comparative Perspective, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Moffitt, Benjamin & Tormey, Simon (2014) ‘Rethinking Populism: Politics, Mediatisation and Political Style’, Political Studies, 64: 381-397.
Mudde, Cas and Rovira Kaltwasser, Cristobal (2012) ‘Populism and (Liberal) Democracy: A Framework for Analysis’, in C. Mudde and C. Rovira Kaltwasser (Eds) Populism in Europe and the Americas: Threat or Corrective for Democracy?, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Panniza, Francisco (2009) Contemporary Latin America: Development and Democracy Beyond the Washington Consesus. The Rise of the Left, London: Zed Books.
Pappas, Takis (2014) Populism and Crisis Politics in Greece, Abingdon: Palgrave Macmillan.
POPULISMUS (2015) ‘Background Paper’, Populism and Democracy international conference, Thessaloniki, 26-28 June, http://www.populismus.gr/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/POPULISMUS-background-paper.pdf
Prentoulis, Marina & Thomassen, Lasse (2014) ‘Autonomy and Hegemony in the Squares: The 2011 Protests in Greece and Spain’, in Alexandros Kioupkiolis and Giorgos Katsambekis (eds.), Radical Democracy and Collective Movements Today: The Biopolitics of the Multitude versus the Hegemony of the People, Farnham: Ashgate, pp. 213-234.
Roberts, Kenneth M. (2015) ‘Populism, Political Mobilisations, and Crises of Political Representation’, in De la Torre, Carlos (ed.) The Promise and Perils of Populism. Global Perspectives, Kentucky: Kentucky University Press, pp. 140-158.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2003) ‘Religious Populism and Political Culture: The Greek Case’, South European Society and Politics, 7, pp. 29-52.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2004) ‘Antinomies of Formalism: Laclau’s Theory of Populism and the Lessons from Religious Populism in Greece’, Journal of Political Ideologies, 9(3), pp. 253-267.
Stavrakakis, Yannis (2005) ‘Religion and Populism in Contemporary Greece’, in Panizza, Francisco (ed.) Populism and the Mirror of Democracy, London: Verso, pp. 224-249.
Voerman, Gerrit (2015) ‘Left-wing populism and the Dutch Socialist Party. An interview with Professor Gerrit Voerman’, POPULISMUS Interventions, no. 2, http://www.populismus.gr/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/interventions2-voerman.pdf.
Relevant material is also accessible through the POPULISMUS Observatory:
DAY 10, SESSIONS 19 & 20
Applying Discourse Theory: Participant Case Studies & Conclusion
Day 10 is the second and final of the two days devoted to a discussion of participants’ research. As before, these sessions also act as a forum to raise and discuss general issues and questions arising out of earlier sessions in the week.