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By David Weir

A masterful research of the hidden roots of latest tradition and will b learn by way of an individual attracted to how and why our highbrow panorama has replaced really dramatically because the Victorian period.

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Extra resources for Anarchy & culture: the aesthetic politics of modernism

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Republican politics circa 199496 encouraged a proliferation of power not unlike anarchism, even though Republi- Page 10 can ideology dictated homogeneity of culture and common values. Paradoxically, Mr. Gingrich promoted a totalizing form of American culture even as he sought to break political structures down into ever-smaller units. Today, Republicans and Marxists mirror each other precisely: one has separated politics from ideology; the other has separated ideology from politics. One imagines American culture as something uniform and shared by all; the other is drawn to the diverse cultures of postmodernism where separate identities proliferate.

1 Anarchism is fraught with a number of internal contradictions that create the need for endless clarifications by its proponents and, at the same time, justify its dismissal by detractors. Conventionally regarded as the odd man out in a set of political ideologies that have developed out of the Enlightenment in the wake of the French Revolutionliberalism, conservatism, socialism, and utilitarianismanarchism clearly lacks the support and respect the other ideologies enjoy. Today, one might claim to be a liberal, a conservative, a Page 13 socialist, or even a utilitarian, but the person who embraces anarchism is likely to be regarded as a crank at best or a terrorist at worst.

2 The ambiguity that attaches to the idea of anarchism derives in large part from late Enlightenment responses to Rousseau. These responses are, in turn, based on fundamental contradictions in Rousseau's political philosophy. To the extent that Rousseau is an Enlightenment philosophe, he is every anarchist's common enemy, a proponent of government and obedience to the general will, rather than an advocate of free association and individual liberty. To the extent that Rousseau is a romantic revolutionary, he is the anarchist's greatest ally, the defender of natural law and absolute equality against the encroachments of artificial, outside authority.

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