DRAFT OF THE CONFERENCE
"Democratic Participation in a Globalized World“
To be organized by Center for the Empirical Researches of Religion
And Center for the Political Culture,
With the support of Konrad Adenauer Stiftung, Sarajevo Office
Jahorina, 2013, October 30-November 1
Democracy is supposed to be the „perfect“ model of making political decisions, and is, after the so called third wave and fourth wave of democracy we are witnessing today becoming universally applicable model of government. It presupposes the participation of citizens in making political decision and accountability of political elite.
Yet, some issues emerged regarding the relevancy of democracy today, such as the growing apathy of citizens as a global tendency that can lead to the lost of legitimacy of democracy, growing divide between those in power those without political power, and the reduction of democracy to the pure procedure (such as voting every 4th year) which leaves the issue of democratic values and virtues aside. From that reason, theory of radical democracy came onto scene (e.g. in the work of Chantal Mouffe, Ernesto Laclau) that lay stress on the issue of revival of civic and democratic values for, regarding this theory, we are witnessing to the limiting of democracy to a mere set of neutral procedures, the transformation of citizens into political consumers and the liberal insistence on a supposed „neutrality“ of the state, have emptied politics of its substance. Therefore, the aim of the conference is to analize the danger of reduction of politics to economimcs and stripping of democracy of all ethical components.
These issues will be adressed, as in the previous conference, from the multidisciplinary perspective in order to nourish nuanced approach and connect young scientiests from different BIH universities from varied scientific background.
1) Democracy in Philosophical Perspective: Between Criticism and New Democratic Opportunities
In this presentation, it will be stressed that philosophers usually criticized democracy as kind of tyranny of majority and model of government which brings massses on pedestal and endangers individual liberty and individualism itself. Therefore, it is important to note that philosophy is not against democracy per se, yet only against perversion of its ethical and moral principles. Also, it will be noted that philosophy also, despite its criticism toward democracy, can open our minds and enhance our potentials for democratic participation.
2) Democracy in Sociological Perspective: Issues of Inclusion and Exclusion.
In this presentation, it will be highlighted that, due to the reduction of democracy to pure procedure, different marginalized groups are excluded and invisible in democratic system. This is especially the case in BIH due to the tyranny of three ethnic majorities that leaves other political issues asside.
3) Democracy Beyond Religion, Religion Beyond Democracy.
In this presentation, it will be stress that religion, in case of religous foundamentalism, can endanger democracy itself, but on the other hand, can provide it with ethical issues lacking today and enable citizens for political participation through FBO, which are usually invisible due to the false neutrality of liberal state. Religion can encourage political mobilization and participation, yet it must be contained within democratic values for the survival of democracy itself.
4) Democracy in Media Mirror.
Since no social event is today visible if not covered by media, it will be stressed their importance for functioning of democracy. Media are supposed to be watchdog of political elite and carefully cover and report violations of democratic procedure. It will be also analyzed to what extent media in BIH have fullfilled these roles.