International Political Theory

Ethnocentric Political Theory

The Pursuit of Flawed Universals

Authors: Parekh, Bhikhu

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  • Calls for multicultural perspective ​in political theory, uncovering and overcoming ethnocentric bias
  • Starts a critical dialogue with voices that have been marginalised, ignored or suppressed
  • Represents a small step towards rethinking political theory and not only advocate but practice it
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  • ISBN 978-3-030-11708-5
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Softcover 25,99 €
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About this book

Western political theory has many great strengths but also a few weaknesses. Among the latter should be included its ethnocentricity, its tendency to universalize the local. The political theorist makes universal statements about human beings, societies and states without making a close study of them, and about reason, tradition, human nature and moral ideals without appreciating how differently these are understood in different societies and traditions. These statements are often an uncritical universalisation of his society’s modes of thought and experience. This book traces this tendency in different areas of moral and political life, and argues that a critical engagement between different perspectives offers one possible way to counter this tendency. Seeking universally valid knowledge is a legitimate ambition, but Western political theory cannot realise it without the help of the non-Western as its critical interlocutor.

About the authors

Bhikhu Parekh is Emeritus Professor of Political Theory at the University of Hull, UK, and was Visiting Professor at Harvard, the University of Pennsylvania, and McGill University, USA. He is the author of several widely acclaimed books on political philosophy, including Rethinking Multiculturalism (2000). He received a Lifetime Achievement Award in Political Studies and a Fellow of the British Academy and the European Academy.

Reviews

“This book offers a critique of the continuing unconscious ethnocentrism of Western political theory; but its goal is not to debunk, but to improve theory. It contains a number of enlightening and stimulating discussions of crucial political issues of our day, including liberal democracy, rights, and secularism.” (Charles Taylor, Professor Emeritus, McGill University, Canada)

“Bhikhu Parekh’s book demonstrates the power of his multicultural approach, which he applies to a wide range of controversial topics in political theory. His critique of parochialism in mainstream liberal thought and his persistent advocacy of value pluralism are particularly thought-provoking. This is an important book and challenges liberals to engage with it.” (Rainer Bauböck, European University Institute, Florence, Italy)

“In this masterful analysis, Bhikhu Parekh makes powerfully clear the limitations and dangers of ethnocentrism for post-colonial political theory as well as the need for dialogue to overcome them and reconstitute itself. Parekh is already one of the finest political theorists today. This is one of his greatest contributions – a compelling must read that stands at the start of a new course for future political theory.” (Thom Brooks, Professor of Law and Government, Durham University, UK)

“Bhikhu Parekh is a distinguished political philosopher, especially in relation to how to understand and cherish cultural diversity. These essays, spanning three decades of sustained exploration of the latter, constitute one of the best sources of multiculturalism and of the need to go beyond liberalism. Parekh examines the presuppositions and limitations of liberalism, displacing it as a continuous monologue, and making political theory more dialogical.” (Tariq Modood, FBA, University of Bristol, UK)

 

 

Table of contents (15 chapters)

Table of contents (15 chapters)
  • Introduction

    Pages 1-21

    Parekh, Bhikhu

  • The Concept of Rights

    Pages 23-39

    Parekh, Bhikhu

  • Human Rights and Moral Pluralism

    Pages 41-58

    Parekh, Bhikhu

  • Reason and Identity

    Pages 59-71

    Parekh, Bhikhu

  • Regulating Hate Speech

    Pages 73-94

    Parekh, Bhikhu

Buy this book

eBook 20,22 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-11708-5
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover 25,99 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-11707-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
  • The final prices may differ from the prices shown due to specifics of VAT rules

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Ethnocentric Political Theory
Book Subtitle
The Pursuit of Flawed Universals
Authors
Series Title
International Political Theory
Copyright
2019
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG, part of Springer Nature
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-11708-5
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-11708-5
Softcover ISBN
978-3-030-11707-8
Series ISSN
2662-6039
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
X, 290
Topics