Skip to main content

Photo:Library“, by Stewart Butterfield licensed under CC BY 2.0. Hue modified from the original.

Schmidt-Gleim, Meike, Ruzha Smilova, and Claudia Wiesner, eds. Democratic Crisis Revisited: The Dialectics of Politicisation and Depoliticisation. Vol. 8. Nomos Verlag, 2022.


‘Democratic crisis revisited’ illuminates and reconceptualises the multiple facets of the contemporary crises of democracy in Europe and beyond. It combines context-specific case studies from examples all over Europe, and especially from Eastern Europe, with a theoretical reconceptualisation of democracy. Democracy is conceived of as an ongoing practice of open-ended democratic procedures. Crisis in this view plays a constitutive role for democracy that can disintegrate but also recreate it. Democracy is thus a dialectical struggle between practices of politicisation and depoliticisation, i.e. it produces contingency and processes that decrease it. This understanding of the crisis as constitutive for democracy may open new avenues for democratisation rather than deal it a death blow.

The Illiberalism Studies Program studies the different faces of illiberal politics and thought in today’s world, taking into account the diversity of their cultural context, their intellectual genealogy, the sociology of their popular support, and their implications on the international scene.