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Original scientific paper


Henning Ottmann ; Geschwister-Scholl-Institut für Politische Wissenschaft, München, Germany

Fulltext: croatian, pdf (106 KB) pages 129-141 downloads: 531* cite
APA 6th Edition
Ottmann, H. (2010). Decizionistički modeli politike. Politička misao, 47 (1), 129-141. Retrieved from
MLA 8th Edition
Ottmann, Henning. "Decizionistički modeli politike." Politička misao, vol. 47, no. 1, 2010, pp. 129-141. Accessed 30 Sep. 2020.
Chicago 17th Edition
Ottmann, Henning. "Decizionistički modeli politike." Politička misao 47, no. 1 (2010): 129-141.
Ottmann, H. (2010). 'Decizionistički modeli politike', Politička misao, 47(1), pp. 129-141. Available at: (Accessed 30 September 2020)
Ottmann H. Decizionistički modeli politike. Politička misao [Internet]. 2010 [cited 2020 September 30];47(1):129-141. Available from:
H. Ottmann, "Decizionistički modeli politike", Politička misao, vol.47, no. 1, pp. 129-141, 2010. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 30 September 2020]

It is with good reason that decisionism stresses the crucial importance of decisions
in the political process. But it is necessary to evaluate critically its
dramatic pretension (from Schmitt to Agamben), according to which the normality
of life is juxtaposed with the pathos of the state of exception and crisis.
This erases not only every distinction between normality and the state of exception,
but even between democracy and dictatorship. The proper framework
from which an explanation of decisionism and its dramatizing forms can be
derived is the modern age as a whole. The birth of decisionism from the crisis
of tradition and commonality can be observed already in the beginning of modernity:
with Machiavelli and Hobbes. We find the peak of dramatisation in
Schmitt’s decisionism, in the use of political theology for the dramatization of
politics as drama of the subject which obtains his self-willed freedom through
a secularist disempowerment of God. The other strand of political philosophy
advocates the political priority of discussion and discourse, as opposed to the
priority of decision. The author is interested in forms of discourse which revolve
in a Habermasian or Rawlsian way around the concept of deliberative
democracy. The theories of deliberative democracy are mostly characterized
by the following postulates: demand for equality and inclusion, for non-coercion
and communicativeness, oriented towards mutual understanding. The
author points out that these demands reflect too great expectations, which cannot
be fulfilled by discourse and discussion (expectations of consensus and rationality,
underestimating of pre-discursive assumptions). In the final section,
the author concludes that both decisionism and theory of discourse resulted
from the modern-age loss of tradition and commonality. Decision and discussion
could be perceived as feuding brothers, although they are doing their best
to negate their kinship. A mediation of opposition is possible insofar as the
feuding brothers recognize the fact that they are related. Unification at least
protects them from the danger of irrationalism and excessive expectation of

politics; decisionism; discourse; discussion; deliberation

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