Rowman and Littlefield International

The Cosmopolitan Ideal

Challenges and Opportunities

Edited by Sybille De La Rosa and Darren O'Byrne

2 Reviews

Critically interrogating the popular concept of cosmopolitanism, this book offers new insight of what it means to be a world citizen today.

Hardback ISBN: 9781783482290 Release date: May 2015
£105.00 €126.00 $137.00
Paperback ISBN: 9781783482306 Release date: May 2015
£35.00 €44.95 $46.00
Ebook ISBN: 9781783482313 Release date: May 2015
£29.95 €41.95 $43.50

Pages: 210


Cosmopolitanism has resurfaced as a prominent perspective within philosophy and the social sciences. Its critics, though, suggest that contemporary cosmopolitanism is abstract and ultimately meaningless, or that it is the globalized expression of a very European, and modern, ideal.

This book aims to develop a new cosmopolitanism: one that is critical, inclusive, and relevant for the twenty-first century. The first section considers why we should behave as cosmopolitans at all; why do we owe some concept of justice to those who are suffering some form of injustice around the world? The book then moves beyond normative debates, using empirical studies on practical concerns to explore the ways in which we can break with traditional structures, practices, and power inequalities that have been based on disregard and subordination. Extending the scope of cosmopolitanism to incorporate issues such as gender, asylum and identity, to draw on non-Western as well as Western influences, the book re-conceptualizes terms like democracy, refuge and representation, in order to develop more inclusive and cosmopolitan understandings of them.

Introduction; Sybille De La Rosa and Darren O’Byrne / PART I: The Debate on Cosmopolitism and Connected Discourses / 1. Humanity, Rights and the Ideal of Critical Cosmopolitanism; Amos Nascimento / 2. A Feminist Cosmopolitanism: Relational or Non-Relational; Angie Pepper / PART II: The Challenges of Cosmopolitism / 3. Finding the Universality Beyond Language and Culture: Comparative Political Theory and the Cosmopolitanism of Wang Yangming and Immanuel Kant; Sae Hee Lee / 4. Back to the Future: Postmulticulturalism, Immanent Cosmopolitanism; Sneja Gunew / 5. Writing Through a Critical Cosmopolitan Lens; Anne Surma / 6. A New Cosmopolitan World History?: Polycentrism and Beyond; Martin Hewson / PART III: Critical Cosmopolitan Perspectives / 7. The Cosmopolitan Ideal and the Civilizing Process: Expanding Citizenship for Peace; Geneviève Souillac / 8. Critical Cosmopolitanism: Democracy and Representation; Sybille De La Rosa / 9. Jacques Derrida and The Case of Cosmopolitan: ‘Cities of Refuge’ in the 21st Century; Spiros Makris / Bibliography / Index

Darren O’Byrne is reader of sociology and human rights at the University of Roehampton.

Sybille de la Rosa is assistant chair in the Department of Political Science at the University of Heidelberg.

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2 Reviews

Cosmopolitanism is coming of age. The editors of this volume have assembled an
impressive series of cutting-edge contributions on the topic. Coming from different
perspectives, the chapters seek to steer a path toward a "global critical cosmopolitanism"
- where "critical" does not mean a rejection of the "cosmopolitan ideal" but rather a
more self-reflective approach cognizant of the likely exclusion or repression of
relevant "others" under prevailing power constellations.

Fred R. Dallmayr, Packey J. Dee Professor Emeritus, University of Notre Dame

Committed to the cosmopolitan project, the authors of this book nevertheless pose a serious challenge to its purely normative definition. By engaging in a wide range of analyses--from human rights to basic conceptual assumptions, from conditions of intercultural communication to prospects and pitfalls of a globalized idea of democracy--this well-conceived volume aims to advance a critical cosmopolitanism by problematizing its Western roots. It admirably succeeds.

Hans-Herbert Kögler, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, University of North Florida

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