17. Mai 2013 · Kommentare deaktiviert für Tariq Ali: Reply to Asef Bayat, NRL 80, 2013 · Kategorien: Lesehinweise · Tags:

“[…] Bayat concludes his reflections on the early outcomes of the Arab Spring with some more general remarks on the possible and desirable means of fundamental social change today. In a striking move, he goes on to associate ‘refolution’- creating ‘a better environment for the consolida-tion of electoral democracy’- with Raymond Williams’s elaboration of the idea of a ‘long revolution’. Here, he writes, is ‘another understanding of “revolution”’, and so it is, but not of a kind that is likely to flatter the practitioners of refolution as an improvised route to the next political settlement. For Williams, the revolution would be long in the making and even longer, perhaps, in the fulfilment, precisely because of the scope and depth of the transformation it envisaged; but it would not be gradualist in the sense that reformists and latter-day eclectics propose. ‘The condition for the success of the long revolution in any real terms is decisively a short revolution’, he wrote. 15 It may come early or late on in the sequence, but its moment is inescapable. The conceptual frame-work of the long revolution offered a way to resist, theoretically and in practice, the ‘scaling-down’ of expectations – a horizon limited to the achievement of universal suffrage, a certain standard of living, a given school-leaving age – that was itself a severe hindrance to genuine democratic, industrial and cultural advance, Williams argued. It suggested a measure for actual conditions of development and demanded that we identify and counter the forces – ‘the nameable agencies of power and capital, distraction and disinformation’ – that continually operated to block or limit any forward move. Accommodation with them, as Bayat proposes, was not an option.” (S. 74)

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