Honneth points to another distinction between Rancière and himself, which is relevant: between an “inner struggle” and an “external struggle for recognition” (pp. 105-106). If Honneth Rancière attributes a theoretical interest above all to “the interruption of the entire normative order”, he himself claims to be interested in the internal struggle for recognition, which “does not call into question the existing principles of recognition”. calls into question existing interpretations” (p. 105). While I agree with Honneth, I believe that it is precisely this point that presents the decisive paradox of Rancière`s policy: Rancière reflects the interruptions of groups that question the normative order and nevertheless refuses to claim the institutionalization of the “revolutionary” policy of disagreement or the creation of a new or other order. In doing so, he even seems to engage in the internal struggle for recognition: “This means that political action is not simply the negative interruption of police domination. It enshrines the effects of equality in our laws and practices. And these inscriptions, in turn, allow new conflicts and political actions” (p.
125). This volume follows a meeting between Jacques Rancière and Axel Honneth in June 2009 in the “mythical building” (p. 107) of the Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt, the discussion being moderated by Christoph Menke. Reconnaissance ou désaccord includes the lectures and two other texts by Rancière and Honneth, as well as essays by editors Katia Genel and Jean-Philippe Deranty. Before turning to the common characteristics of the theoretical buildings of Honneth and Rancière, I would like to briefly mention the conditions for their disagreement. While Honneth, heir to hermeneutics and partly to Habermas` social philosophy, has a sociological vision of political and social phenomena, Rancière`s intellectual concern refutes any type of “sociology” (or even more “social” or “political philosophy”). Instead of theoretically explaining or supporting existing (or possible) political structures, regimes, and institutions, he focuses on the multiple possibilities of changing these structures, norms, and what he calls the “distribution of reasonableness” (p. 136). One can even refine this opposition and assert that, while Honneth is interested in archaic politics as a policy of introducing, forming, and maintaining social structures (and this is even more the case for his later work), Rancière is interested in the archiarchic (non-anarchist) challenges to these structures, which reveal social injustices and political lies.
This is why the terms as well as the theoretical “slogans” used by Honneth and Rancière have a versatility due to their attachment to very different theoretical films, forcing the reader to carefully check the meanings that undermine these respective terms and words. These terms can be listed in pairs, such as recognition against disagreement, freedom against equality, recognitive order against police order, ethical life (morality) against democracy, and identification against subjectivity….