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(Post)Hegemony and the Promise of Populism: Reflections on the Politics of Our Times

Baker P (2016) (Post)Hegemony and the Promise of Populism: Reflections on the Politics of Our Times. Politica comun, 10.

First paragraph: Hegemony is a term both elusive and recurrent. It provides a theory of the social for a world in which all universalizing truth narratives have lost their fantasmatic hold over our lives and, in their withdrawal, we are forced to confront the fictions that they in fact always represented. In a certain sense, hegemony theory is the fiction of social fiction; a fiction designed to account for the groundlessness of the social imaginaries with which we construct our respective worlds. It is a term with particular currency in the field of Cultural Studies, where the emergence of the concept as part of a new methodological practice in the study of politics at the University of Essex (among scholars such as the young Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe), and its reception in the Birmingham Contemporary Centre of Cultural Studies (particularly in the writings of Stuart Hall), makes it a fundamental part of what Fredric Jameson once called, not without a hint of irony, the “desire” of Cultural Studies (1993, 17). Indeed, Jon Beasley-Murray has gone as far as to say that hegemony theory should today be considered the “master trope of cultural studies” (2010, 39).

Politica comun: Volume 10

Author(s)Baker, Peter
Publication date31/12/2016
Publication date online2016
Date accepted by journal26/10/2016
PublisherUniversity of Michigan
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