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Jürgen Habermas

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 112 Kb

str. 96-111

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What is the state of consciousness of modernity presently like? Is modernity
as out of date as is claimed by neoconservatism in general and the postmodernists
in particular? Neoconservatists accuse modern culture of undermining
the ethical foundations of social life. The author shows that neoconservatism
does not understand the relation between culture and society, and that it
ascribes to cultural modernity the pathological syndromes (hedonism, narcissism,
loss of identity) which are, in fact, the product of capitalist modernisation
of economy and society. Through money and power, the systemic imperatives
of market economy and of the bureaucratic state gravely endanger
the world of life and the process of cultural reproduction and social integration.
Thus, it is solely through distinction between societal and cultural modernisation
that one can also understand the pathological effects resulting from
the sphere of culture itself. While societal modernisation is characterised by a
growing autonomy of purposefully rational activity (in market economy and
administration), which leads to colonisation of the world of life, cultural modernisation
is marked by an increasing differentiation of cultural value spheres
(science, morality, art) based on varied aspirations to validity (truth, rightness,
authenticity) and by a differentiation of structures of rationality (cognitiveinstrumental,
moral-practical, aesthetic). Conservative critics of the aporiae of
modern culture reject the entire project of modernity, advocating either a return
to pre-modernism, or a step forward into postmodernity, or else mere anti-
modernity (philosophers such as Nietzsche, Heidegger, Bataille, Foucault,
Derrida). In contrast to them, the author sees the potentials of modernity in
the protection and development of the sphere of communicational rationality
against the systemic imperatives of economy and of the state, in the reestablishment
of links between the spheres of science, morality and art, and in connecting
the corresponding expert cultures with the communicational practice
of the world of life. Thus perceived, modernity is still an unfinished project,
which encompasses historical emancipatory potentials only as a differentiated
reactive linkage of modern culture with everyday practice, only if societal modernisation
can also be steered down other non-capitalist paths, if the world of
life can develop out of itself institutions limited by the dynamics of the economic
and administrative system.

Ključne riječi

cultural and social modernity; differentiated rationality; systemic imperatives; world of life; conservatism; postmodernity; Adorno; Kant

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