Against Ideology: Democracy and the human interaction sphere
This chapter argues that democracy should not be seen as an ideology and that it is important to to be explicit about why this is the case. Its specific focus is the notion of holistic democracy. A distinction is drawn between a rich conception of democracy such as holistic democracy and the concept of ideology. The discussion seeks to position the democratic ideal within, or in relation to, modernism and its associated deconstructive, anti-foundationalist assumptions. Arguments are put forward for the possibility of transcendent grounding in modernity, with particular attention to what is termed here the ‘human interaction sphere’ (interactions of the human self with others that generate a compelling affective charge and ethical impulse). It is argued that understanding democracy as having some degree of transcendent validity gives it greater warrant and power than seeing democracy as a counter-ideology in educational administration.