#5 Renunciation & Prohibition | 01 June 2022 | Philipp Lepenies, Ulrike Herrmann & Silke Burmester (Moderation)
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Renunciation and prohibition play a central role in a sustainable social and ecological transformation. But what can the state tell us, what interference in individual liberties is allowed/acceptable when it comes, for example, to climate protection or the management of social crises and the common good? A fundamental, emotionally heated defensive attitude has developed in recent years as soon as it comes to state regulations, states the political scientist Philipp Lepenies in his most recently published book „Verbot und Verzicht. Politik aus dem Geist des Unterlassens“ (Suhrkamp 2022).
For Lepenies, this is also a consequence of an “everyday neoliberalism”, which transfigures consumer sovereignty into an inalienable right to freedom and the state into a principled opponent. But how can a concept of freedom be established that is more than the freedom to make individual consumption decisions? How much affect control does a stable democracy need in view of current upheavals and crises? Can a comprephensive ecological and social transformation succeed without prohibition and renunciation?
Philipp Lepenies, Professor of Political Science, SCRIPTS Cluster Professorship for Sustainable Development, Freie Universität Berlin.
Ulrike Herrmann, journalist, author, economic editor for “die tageszeitung”.
Silke Burmester (moderation), author, freelance journalist.