Nadia Urbinati

A republic without representation nor public deliberation

  • Abstract

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Keywords: sovereignty, representation, judgment, deliberation, free speech, rhetoric.

This article analyzes the arguments Jean-Jacques Rousseau devised against representation and claims that they are consistent with his theory of sovereignty as the will. On this theme, Rousseau spoke the same language as Filmer and Bodin, whose works were seminal to him. Disclaim of representation entailed also disclaim of public deliberation (as we know Rousseau thought a good assembly of citizens should vote in silence in order not to make room for rhetoric). Rousseau's critical arguments can be used to prove a contrario the endogenous link between representation and public deliberation.

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