Global Civil Society

Chapter

Abstract

In the 20 years from 1989 and the collapse of communism – the “end of history” for some – to 2009 much has changed in terms of how global civil society is viewed by commentators and by powerful political actors. While it was once the shining beacon of civility and progress it is now largely marginalized when not demonized as part of the “dark forces” threatening Western hegemony. To seek a more nuanced understanding of global civil society I argue for conceptual clarification of the underpinning political concepts so that at least we can be clear what it is that divides the various positions taken. Global civil society is a contested political terrain and social and political theory arguments often mask simple political stances. One way forward for the debate is to understand the inherently contradictory nature of civil society and the way in which it is discursively constructed in different ways and for different purposes.

Keywords

Depression Europe Posit Arena Stake 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dublin City UniversityDublinIreland

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