Comparing WE’s Lisbon conference – 8-9 oct 2015 !

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The “we”, the communitarian, has been central to the debates in the social sciences and the political field of the last decades. Drawing on widely heterogeneous perspectives, ranging from the “recovery” of communism (Žižek 2001; Žižek and Douzinas 2013), the emergence of anti-institutional forms of emancipation and community integration (Virno 2004; Negri and Hardt 2009), the valorization of dissensus and of oppositional models confronted to consensus and articulation (Rancière 2010) to the definition of the agon as a way of making democracy possible (Mouffe and Laclau 2001), we are witnessing an attempt to recover the communal and the common as a subject of analysis and historical change. To understand that process appears to be urgent and essential for two reasons: first, because it challenges the centrality of the subject, understood as an autonomous entity, as well as the restrictions of post-political individualism derived from the —post- modern— death of the subject. Secondly, because the recent phenomena of occupation and transformation of the public sphere offer the most adequate context to understand the logic linking participative dynamics, critical models of cosmopolitanism and interconnected processes of emancipation and protest.

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