Tolerance: A Sensorial Orientation to Politics

Paperback | October 2, 2013

byLars Tonder

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The main task of Tolerance is to reorient discussions in democratic theory so as better to theorize how tolerance can operate as an active force in the context of deep pluralism. The objective is to develop a theory of active tolerance attentive to the many different ways in which societiescan become tolerant, and to discuss what might get lost, conceptually as well as politically, if we don't pay attention to how active tolerance subsists within other practices of tolerance. Tolerance exceeds existing accounts, I argue, not because it cannot be domesticated for the purposes of eitherrestraint or benevolence, but because this domestication does not preclude the possibility of another, more active tolerance.Tolerance develops this argument by mobilizing what I call a "sensorial orientation to politics." While a sensorial orientation does not refute the role of reason in democratic politics, it differs from its intellectualist counterpart by arguing that practices of reason-giving include ways ofsensing the world, insisting that reason is always-already sensorial. A sensorial orientation, in other words, focuses on the embodied conditions of reasoning, which it takes to be neither completely synergistic nor immediately present, but reliant on representations, images, and memories, whichsituate sensory input within historically defined regimes of discourse and sensation, and which assume that sentient beings experience the world through both thought and action, mind and body.Theorists discussed in the book include Seneca, Spinoza, Nietzsche, Marcuse, and Merleau-Ponty, together with Descartes, Locke, Kant, Mill, Rawls, Forst, Scanlon, Taylor, Brown, and Connolly. Tolerance draws on a critical consideration of these thinkers in order to shed new light on the role oftolerance in both contemporary democratic theory and contemporary public discourse. The aim is to show how tolerance once again can become a practice of empowerment and pluralization.

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The main task of Tolerance is to reorient discussions in democratic theory so as better to theorize how tolerance can operate as an active force in the context of deep pluralism. The objective is to develop a theory of active tolerance attentive to the many different ways in which societiescan become tolerant, and to discuss what might...

Lars Tonder is an assistant professor in political theory at Northwestern University.

other books by Lars Tonder

Format:PaperbackDimensions:208 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.68 inPublished:October 2, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199315817

ISBN - 13:9780199315819

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgementsIntroduction: Tolerance in Question1. Impossible Tolerance2. Remembering Tolerance3. Affirming Tolerance4. Perceiving ToleranceConclusion: Diogenes and UsNotesBibliographyIndex