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The Cosmopolitan Utopia

Author(s): Burhan Ghalioun

Journal: Revista CIDOB d'Afers Internacionals
ISSN 1133-6595

Issue: 82-83;
Start page: 109;
Date: 2008;
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Keywords: Universalism | cosmopolitism | globalisation | cultural identity

After examining the progressive transformations of cosmopolitanism in history, the author presents contemporary cosmopolitanism as a methodological concept that must respond to the challenge raised by the process of increasing interdependence and transnationalization. From this methodological perspective, the author pushes the concept even further to consider it as a practical demand for bringing order to a socially and politically deregulated world that is not moving only toward unification, but rather toward disintegration and differentiation, It is precisely because of this point that the new methodological cosmopolitanism cannot in any way be disassociated from a normative cosmopolitanism that ensures that it is not merely left to the good conscience of the dominant elite and which, therefore, provides an answer to the traumatisms and fractures that are engendered by the savagery of material globalisation. Given these fractures, a withdrawal to the past or a closure of identity is not possible; instead we need to carry out a democratisation of international life. Only in this way can we achieve citizenship on a global dimension and ensure that solidarity acquires a universal nature.
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