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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Sprach- und literaturwissenschaftliche Fakultät - Nordeuropa-Institut

Projekt Gemenskaper - Arbeitshefte Bd. 5: Communication and Instrumentalization

On a Theory of Sustainable Development of Collective Identities


Compared to the "golden" fifties and sixties, when economic growth, social progress and democratization appeared to form a natural and uniform modernization complex, in the past two decades awareness of the functional disorders and contingencies of the modern age has increased.1 The spectrum ranges from irritations in the modernization process, above all various negative externalizations, through to the complete "breakdown of modernization" in totalitarianism or war.2 Until now the debate on a sustainable or reflexive modernization which attempts to negotiate such obstacles has been conducted primarily in relation to ecology. A corresponding discussion on problematic, spurious or sustainable aspects of modernization in the area of social relations is only just beginning. At present it is restricted to isolated contributions which deal separately with the perceived deterioration of daily life, paradigms of nation formation and civil society, and partially modern or anti-modern phenomena such as nationalism, fascism or totalitarianism.3
This contribution outlines a research project from the area of historical political sociology which aims to use analysis of historical approaches to changes in collective identities in different political systems to benefit the theoretical debate on reflexive modernization.4
How can modernization be organized in such a way that the dissolution of the outlived old system leads to a democratic reorganization? How can symptoms of disintegration and anomie, which call collective identities into question, be sustainably checked through participation in society and binding mutual norms?5
Against the background of these questions, an appropriate initial approach for an analysis of political activity which is aimed at shaping social relations can be outlined as follows. Firstly, on the basis of comparison of an unsuccessful attempt at reorganization with a successful one and examination of the common features and differences, the conditions for successful modernization of collective identities can be determined so as to allow formation of differentiated hypotheses.6 Secondly, it is above all analysis of a phase of radical change, in which dissolution and reorganization can be seen particularly vividly, which promises to provide informative results.
Both these conditions are met by a comparison of the redefinition of social relations in Germany and Sweden in the thirties. The problem of institutionalization of a deproletarianized mass society, which forced its way onto the political agenda in the twentieth century, was dealt with energetically in both countries at that time, and resolved differently. Considering the historical development, the hypothesis can be formulated that conceptual and structural similarities, which could result from the international character of the problems and the available political instruments, stand in contrast to fundamental differences in the content of the politically formulated designs for collective identities.7
In the context of National Socialism the concept of the people's community (Volksgemeinschaft) can at most be understood as a selective and (self-)destructive occupation of certain motifs of modernism, but not a practicable attempt at modernization. On the other hand the Swedish Social Democrats' concept of the people's home (folkhem) was the foundation for a social plan which was successful at least into the seventies and was often seen as a model. Comparison of the formulation and execution of these two political designs of community in the thirties can, however not provide any universal insights into the conditions for social modernization, and certainly cannot provide a patent remedy isolated from the historical context. But it can contribute to increasing awareness of the problem of modernization of social relations. Using the example of two different paths of development in Germany and Sweden, which are to be understood "as expression, result or symbol of the overall social context"8, it is possible to formulate hypotheses on the success and failure of attempts at social-political integration in the modern age. Such a comparison combines generalizing and singularizing explanations of National Socialism to form a comprehensive approach.

Colonization of the Lifeworld or Lifeworld-System Balance

A political abyss separates the fascist and democratic regimes which have shaped this century.9 A high degree of abstraction is required to compare the common features and differences of representatives of the two systems. An investigation which connects democracy and fascism in a common framework must be based on general macrotheoretical considerations of at least middle range. The decisive reason for the &173; rarely undertaken &173; comparison of dictatorship and democracy is, however, reality itself. The twentieth century is characterized by coexistence and opposition of democracies and dictatorships. From the standpoint of a pragmatism in societal comparison, the discussion of general conditioning factors of the "age of extremes"10 therefore necessitates a theoretically wide-ranging comparison covering different systems.
Modernization theories11 and theories of nationalism12 &173; particularly in their newer forms stressing contingencies and ambivalences &173; allow an approach to the conditions of existence of modern democratic and dictatorial regimes. Both strands of theory relate to the radical social change and formation of social structures which, starting at the end of the 18th century with the industrial revolution in England and the political revolutions in France and the United States, have achieved increasing world-wide importance. With this spatially more or less universal but temporally restricted format, both are suitable to investigate problems and solutions for different types of society within their validity.
Here nationalism and modernization are understood as fundamentally ambivalent and in principle compatible phenomena, which cannot be labelled in advance as rational or irrational.13 The common point of reference of both theories is formed by the problems of anomie and nation-building, the moment of individual uncertainty in the dissolution of traditional reference systems and its collective overcoming in the formation of modern ones.
In order to describe more precisely the mechanisms involved in successful or unsuccessful modernization and formation of collective identity, it is necessary to state more precisely what is meant by society. The Social Democratic "people's home" in Sweden and the National Socialist "people's community" can be compared systematically using a model of society which places the dimensions of structure, process and content in a generalized context. In the framework of a model of society based on Jürgen Habermas' wide-ranging and ambitious theory of the modern age, the Theory of Communicative Action14, the comparison of democratic and fascist integration policies promises to provide insights for the problem of modernization of collective identities.
In a departure from conventional modernization theories Habermas describes modernization not as a linear and one-dimensional process of social differentiation, but as a decoupling of system and lifeworld.
According to this theory, the modernization of social relations is the process in which economics and politics, the parts of the system based on the control media of money and power, separate from the lifeworld, communicatively determined spheres of culture, society and personality. On the one hand this process increases the autonomy and problem-solving capacity within the individual parts of society. On the other it increases the repercussions and externalization of resultant costs on the other fields.15
According to this understanding of modernization the interrelationship of system and lifeworld is crucial for the character of modern societies. Habermas treats this as a one-sided imperialist relationship, using the metaphor of the "colonization of the lifeworld". This model is depicted in Figure 1, using Habermas' concepts.

Figure 1: Model of society after Jürgen Habermas, Theory of Communicative Action

The phenomenon of colonization of the lifeworld criticised by Habermas and depicted in Figure 1 is however obviously only one concretization of a largely implicit more general model. It does not provide an exhaustive description of the possible relationships between system and lifeworld. Theoretically a colonization of the system by the lifeworld16 or a relationship of "peaceful" mutual exchange would by just as possible as the subjugation of the lifeworld under system imperatives. For a general theory of modernization of social relations which is not from the start restricted to "pathological" manifestations of capitalism, Habermas' model must be altered and extended to allow differing cases of one-sided incursions and also cases of relative equilibrium to be taken into account.17
For a more open model it is necessary to differentiate according to the direction of influence, due to the decisive role that the system-lifeworld interrelation plays in characterizing the modernization process. The two levels of mutual influence are designated here as "lifeworld policy" and "system discourse". In these designations the respective object of influence is placed in relation to the form of rationality of the subject.
Lifeworld policy is the conscious intervention of the political-economic system in the symbolic, integrative and socializing structures of the lifeworld. The nature of this intervention can differ. After Habermas, a one-sided colonization of the lifeworld would be expected if a segregated caste of technocrats were to ruthlessly afflict the lifeworld sphere of communicative reason with instrumental reason turned to money and power.18 On the other hand a relative equilibrium would exist in a situation of feedback and mediation between expert cultures and everyday practical experience, where the instrumental system logic is from the start undermined by the lifeworld through the contribution of elements of communicative reason. In the first case lifeworld policy would mean forcing the lifeworld into a functionalist corset thus damaging it. In the second case it means to focus lifeworld needs politically, to institutionalize them and to reflect them back into the lifeworld as democratic work in progress.
Lifeworld policy consciously transgresses the boundary of the areas of system and lifeworld, ever growing further apart. Such a transgression is problematical because it automatically confronts different forms of rationality with one another, but it is also necessary as the precondition for reciprocal balancing. In the paradigm, the communicative reason of the lifeworld with the principle of solidarity contained in it is unworldly, while instrumental reason with its performance principle is inhuman. The potential danger involved in the separation of these elements of reason is the fundamental problem which is discussed as the "dialectic of enlightenment".19 Modern differentiation makes it possible to remove rationality of performance from humanist considerations and to transfer it to social-darwinist practice. Because technocratic performance orientation shows a high degree of short-term efficiency, the modern age stands under the continual threat of instrumental reason becoming autonomous.
The influence of the system on the lifeworld through lifeworld policy stands opposed to the influence on the system by the lifeworld, designated here as system discourse. System discourse includes the everyday experience-based ideas about good and appropriate organization of social existence. Communicative reason and ideas of solidarity are its important elements. In lifeworld policy facts are focused and concentrated in accordance with the universalistic tendency of the modern age.
Lifeworld system discourse on the other hand diffuses through many channels into the system; the individualistic tendency of the modern age comes to bear here. Lifeworld policy and system discourse are the media of reciprocal influence of lifeworld and system. The system discourse of the lifeworld leads to consideration of lifeworld standpoints and to a growth in complexity within the system. The lifeworld policy of the system leads to consideration of institutional questions and to rationalization within the lifeworld.20 In this way system discourse and lifeworld policy are the decisive driving forces for social modernization. Social rationality circulates through the continuous transformation of communicative reason into instrumental reason and instrumental reason into communicative reason.21 This model is illustrated in Figure 2.

Figure 2: Circulation model of social rationality22

Problems arise when the flow of rationality is impeded. If the system becomes isolated from the lifeworld or the lifeworld's system discourse is made to dry up, colonization of the lifeworld occurs, as described by Habermas. The lifeworld is one-sidedly instrumentalized from the point of view of performance and destroyed. The system undermines itself and society heads for collapse. The result of an interruption in the flow of rationality is a breakdown of modernization, even if it allows short-term maximization of certain aspects of performance or solidarity.

People's community and people's home as political lifeworld constructions

The initial question concerned differing types and degrees of modernization of social relations, analogous to the debate on sustainable ecologically compatible modernization. The comparison of democratic and fascist societies was expected to provide information on comparatively practicable and less practicable developments and modernization models. Using the paradigm of social rationality described in the previous chapter and in Figure 2, which combines different dimensions of structure, process and content of modernization and proposes to understand the theory of communicative action as a theory of discursive politics, it is now possible to examine and systematize dimensions and questions relevant to the comparison.
The comparison of Sweden and Germany promises to be particularly productive due to a series of historical features the two countries have in common. Both countries were forerunners in the modernization of state administration, but lagged behind other West European states in democratization. Protestantism played an important role in both countries, and Sweden has been strongly marked by German intellectual influences. Despite differences in detail &173; in particular slower industrialization in the 19th century &173; the Swedish modernization model is broadly speaking relatively similar to the German development.23 There are certainly similarities in Sweden to the matters which are discussed under the heading of "German Sonderweg". Because of the parallels in intellectual, political and administrative history, the differences between the Swedish and Germany societies in the thirties can largely be seen as a consequence of the respective Social Democratic or National Socialist regime.
Thus the comparison is between German and Swedish societal policy in the years from 1932/33 to 1945. The lifeworld project of German National Socialism is contrasted with that of Swedish Social Democracy. In both cases we are looking not at implicit intentions which must first be defined and categorized by research, but at conscious political lifeworld designs, which had already found expression in contemporary language. In Sweden after the Social Democrats took power in 1932 the idea and application of lifeworld policy was concentrated in the expression folkhem.
The "people's home" &173; thus the English translation &173; became the model of the Swedish welfare state. If one takes a broad understanding of conceptual history, after Reinhart Koselleck, the German word Volksgemeinschaft ("people's community") is the same concept.24 The "people's community" in Germany was the reference variable of the National Socialist lifeworld policy pursued after the seizure of power in 1933. So in the thirties and forties the specific lifeworld utopias of Swedish Social Democracy and German National Socialism are compressed in the expressions "people's home" and "people's community". Both cover the whole lifeworld spectrum &173; from means of cultural interpretation through formation of community to socialization models. The model of society outlined above can be applied particularly well to Sweden and Germany in the thirties and forties because with the political ideas of "people's home" and "people's community", empirical images corresponding to the analytical concept of lifeworld played a central role.
If in the Sweden of the thirties and forties the basis was laid for a social model which was to be successful for decades, according to the outlined model one would expect a strong pulsation, circulation and inter-transformation of communicative and instrumental reason in this society. The modernity and modernization capacity of a society are expressed, in the first place, in the strength of the rationality cycle.
In the early days of the Swedish welfare state, lifeworld objectives in the form of sustained discourses must have influenced the political system, been translated into political action there, and been projected back effectively in the lifeworld area. For the formulation and implementation of Swedish people's home policy it can therefore be expected that aspects of solidarity and performance will appear in relative equilibrium.
Of course it cannot be expected that Sweden will embody maximum convergence with the paradigm of discursive political organization. A certain degree of tension and discontinuity is certainly probable on closer examination. Jürgen Habermas points out that the "relationship of clients to the administrations of the welfare state [...] is [...] the model case for the colonization of the lifeworld that is behind reification phenomena in advanced capitalist societies."25 In her investigation titled "Making up life. Studies of Swedish People's Home Policy", produced in the scope of the Swedish investigation of power, Yvonne Hirdman puts the question of confrontation between system and lifeworld in the foreground. It certainly cannot be reduced to a purely harmonic transformation of different types of reason.26 The notable economic success of the Swedish model up to the mid-seventies also raises the possibility of certain imbalances through instrumentalistic "autonomization".
The second element of the comparison is Germany. In the period from 1933 to 1945 the country was ruled by the National Socialists. In this period the German empire followed a nationalist dictatorial Sonderweg; it started the Second World War and followed an unprecedented policy of ethnic mass murder. In twelve years of rule the National Socialists devastated Europe and in the process destroyed themselves too. The National Socialist lifeworld project of the well-ordered people's community ended in chaos and disaster and despite elements of continuity, meant a significant break.
According to the outlined model, such a radical, autonomizing, destructive and in the end self-destructive political course would be explained by the political-economic system being cut off from the &173; ideally speaking &173; solidarity-based discourse of the lifeworld. Instrumental reason is no longer transformed into communicative reason and no longer renewed by aspects of lifeworld reason. Rather instrumental thinking is cut off from a basis in lifeworld experience and short-circuited with itself.27 The consequence is what Hans Mommsen describes as "cumulative radicalization".28 Performance becomes an absolute end in itself, without consideration for the loss of the communicative basis for the capacity for performance. The system lifts off, without the possibility of its thrust being taken up productively by the lifeworld and directed back into stabilization of the trajectory of the system. The cycle of social rationality is interrupted and the lifeworld is subjected to one-sided political handling, without itself being heard.
A performance-fixated instrumentalization of the lifeworld is to be expected in the German lifeworld policy of the thirties and forties. Lifeworld policy can then be no more than an instrumental reflection and relativization of the principle of solidarity. At best values and practices of solidarity can be expected as mere functions of instrumental performance orientation without context.
The scenario described here for National Socialism roughly corresponds to "colonization of the lifeworld" in Jürgen Habermas' model. Habermas suggests the conclusion that the one-sided incursion of the system on the lifeworld represents a general model for so-called late capitalist societies. He thus remains closely attached to the view of the older Frankfurt School, which Max Horkheimer summarized with the remark: "he who does not wish to speak of capitalism should be silent about fascism".29 Systematically speaking, Habermas' perception of a pathological tendency in capitalism follows from his analysis of the "Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere".30 According to the explanation developed there this structural transformation, as Habermas understands it, is to be seen as the withering away of lifeworld discourses in capitalist societies. It is this that allows the economic complex the possibility of autonomization and "colonization of the lifeworld".
By contrast, in the model presented here pluralist societies, and thus also the modern capitalist societies, are allocated to the cycle model of social rationality; a broadly balanced relationship is assumed between lifeworld discourses and politics based on them.
The model of colonization of the lifeworld laid out in the Theory of Communicative Action appears only to be a satisfactory description for totalitarian states. Only in totalitarian states is the public sphere practically abolished, it is only in totalitarian states that isolated closed systems exist, without basic openness to communicative reason.
This can be pictured with the assistance of the figures. The model of the cycle of social rationality in Figure 2 is like a boat, with its sail taut in the wind of modernization. According to the hypothesis proposed here, this is the idealized representation of the Swedish case. In Figure 1, which shows the colonization of the lifeworld, the sail flutters insecurely in the modernizing wind and can be blown overboard at any time. In the paradigm this image would represent the conditions under National Socialism.
Taking into account what has been stated so far, fundamental differences must be expected in the comparison between German people's community policy and Swedish people's home policy. For Sweden in the nineteen-thirties and forties the model of circulating social reason is to be expected, for Germany a circulatory collapse of reason and instrumental consumption of the lifeworld. One can derive the hypothesis that National Socialist people's community policy will primarily reflect principles of performance. On the other hand, a relative equilibrium between aspects of solidarity and performance can be expected for Swedish people's home policy.
These suppositions can be tested by a historical reconstruction of political discourses and measures. Which ideas did the leading protagonists from politics, administration and science associate with collective identities and lifeworlds? Which premises and methods were applied in the attempt to form them?
So on the one hand the ideas associated with the talk of people's community and people's home must be investigated. Here it is possible to differentiate between processural, structural and normative aspects. What images were typified in history and education, the ideas about the state, classes, the individual, social outsiders as well as notions about work, duty, social security and justice? How were these represented in conjunction with the propagation of collective identity?
On the other, practical policy must be kept in view. Lifeworld policy is cross-section policy, both fundamentally and in the concretization of both Swedish people's home policy and German people's community policy. It does not correspond to any political office, but is an analytical construct. Aspects or ancillary developments of lifeworld policy can potentially be found in any type of policy. But the expression lifeworld policy should be reserved for those systematic measures in which the lifeworld is present in political deliberations as an important target area. Thus one could speak of people's home policy or people's community policy to the degree to which political systems define the lifeworld as people's home or people's community and explicitly or implicitly take it into consideration as an orientation variable in their own action.
Despite the cross-sectional character of these, there are more or less strong affinities to sectoral policy areas. Two areas of lifeworld policy appear to be of particular importance: Firstly there is "people's community oriented" or "people's home oriented" formation and integration of lifeworld, seen most clearly in social and labour market policy. The second dimension relates to the delimitation of the section of the lifeworld which receives political attention as people's home or people's community. This concerns inclusion and exclusion, seen most clearly in population and racial policy. Essential elements of the respective political lifeworld ideas come into effect in, on the one side social and labour market policy and on the other in population and racial policy.31 In a policy analysis, representative scientific proposals, political writings and speeches, texts of laws, and administrative documents are being examined for the channels and logic which determine political and bureaucratic action during the attempt to establish collective identities in different systems.32
Notwithstanding all the expected differences between Germany and Sweden, the intention is not to paint a black-and-white picture. In the thirties Sweden's policy towards "asocials" went as far as forced sterilization and thus beyond an acceptable level of instrumental reason. If, instead of Germany with its racial policy which degenerated into genocide, the ideal image of the cycle of social rationality is taken as the contrast, then it becomes very clear which dangers even democratic societies are having to deal with in the modernization process.


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Endnotes

1. This publication presents a doctoral project which has the working title "Leistung und Solidarität: Die Konstruktion von nationalsozialistischer Volksgemeinschaft und schwedischem Volksheim" within the Berlin Graduate Programme Gesellschaftsvergleich in historischer, soziologischer und ethnologischer Perspektive. The doctoral project is also part of the research project Die kulturelle Konstruktion von Gemeinschaften im Modernisierungsprozeß: Deutschland und Schweden (Berlin/Florence/Lund).

2. S. N. Eisenstadt, Breakdowns of Modernization, in: Economic Development and Cultural Change 12 (1964), p. 345-367.

3. On the relationship between theories on modernization and reflexive modernization and the paradox of nationalism see: N. Götz, Die Modernisierungstheorien schlagen zurück. Diskussionsstand, kulturwissenschaftliche Anwendung und das Beispiel des Nationalismus, in: B. Henningsen and S. M. Schröder (eds.), Vom Ende der Humboldt-Kosmen. Konturen einer Kulturwissenschaft, Baden-Baden, Nomos, 1997; on social relations at the micro level see: K. O. Hondrich, Lassen sich soziale Beziehungen modernisieren? Die Zukunft von Herkunftsbindungen, in: Leviathan 24 (1996), p. 28-44.

4. This matches the efforts of the classical modernization theories. There, after long neglect due to the primacy of economics and technology in the research, social reforms are being discovered which contrary to the traditional view, are not subject to automatism. See: W. Zapf, Über soziale Innovationen, in: Soziale Welt 40 (1989), p. 170-183. There are links to the communitarianist criticism of the transformation of the social in neoliberalism eroding social morals. See: M. Brumlik, H. Brunkhorst (eds.), Gemeinschaft und Gerechtigkeit, Frankfurt/Main, Fischer, 1993.

5. This question is posed and answered in a classical way by G. Almond and S. Verba, The Civic Culture, Princeton, University Press, 1963.

6. This is also the tendency of the references to comparative modernization research by H.-G. Haupt, J. Kocka, Historischer Vergleich. Methoden, Aufgaben, Probleme. Eine Einleitung, in: H.-G. Haupt, J. Kocka (eds.), Geschichte und Vergleich. Ansätze und Ergebnisse international vergleichender Geschichtsschreibung, Frankfurt/Main et al, Campus, 1996, p. 9-45, here p. 37f.

7. See: B. Henningsen, Die Politik des Einzelnen. Studien zur Genese der skandinavischen Ziviltheologie. Ludvig Holberg, Søren Kierkegaard, N.F.S. Grundtvig, Göttingen, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1977, p. 53; B. Henningsen, B. Stråth, Die Transformation des schwedischen Wohlfahrtsstaates. Ende des 'Modells'?, in: Jahrbuch für Politik 5 (1995), p. 221-246, here p. 223f.; O. Löfgren, Nationella arenor, in: B. Ehn, J. Frykman and O. Löfgren (eds.), Försvenskningen av Sverige. Det nationellas förvandlingar, Stockholm: Natur och kultur, 1993, p. 22-117, here p. 56f.

8. H.-G. Haupt, J. Kocka, Historischer Vergleich, p. 28.

9. The problem of a third type of political system, the communist regime, is excluded here and in the following. How they would be included is made clear in: J. Arnason, Totalitarismus und Modernisierung, in: L. Clausen (ed.), Gesellschaften im Umbruch. Verhandlungen des 27. Kongresses der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Soziologie in Halle an der Saale 1995, Frankfurt/Main [et al], Campus, 1996, p. 154-163.

10. E. Hobsbawm, Age of Extremes. The Short Twentieth Century 1914-1991, London, Joseph, 1994.

11. The crisis model of the Committee on Comparative Politics was a pioneering theory: L. Binder [et al], Crises and sequences in political development, Princeton, University Press, 1971; an early treatment of ambiguous modernization is provided by: D. Rüschemeyer, Partielle Modernisierung, in: W. Zapf (ed.), Theorien des sozialen Wandels, Cologne: Kiepenheuer & Witsch, 1969, p. 382-396; on more recent reflexive modernization theories see: U. Beck, A. Giddens and S. Lash, Reflexive Modernization, Cambridge, Polity Press, 1994; see also the references in footnotes 2 and 3.

12. See in particular: K. Deutsch, Nationalism and Social Communication. An Enquiry into the Foundations of Nationality, Cambridge, MIT, 1953; E. Gellner, Nations and Nationalism, Oxford, Blackwell, 1983.

13. Nationalism is seen as a broad generic term which includes phenomena from emancipatory struggle and constitutional patriotism to national arrogance and aggression. See also: H. A. Winkler, Vom linken zum rechten Nationalismus: Der deutsche Liberalismus in der Krise von 1878/79, in: Geschichte und Gesellschaft 4 (1978): p. 5-28.

14. J. Habermas, Theorie des kommunikativen Handelns, 2 vol., Frankfurt/Main, Suhrkamp, 1988; (= The Theory of Communicative Action, Cambridge, Polity, 1989.).

15. Habermas, Theorie, in particular Vol. 2, p. 583.

16. This is the position of conservative contemporary critique of civilization, which claims that it is precisely lifeworld hedonism and client mentality which undermine the functioning of state and economy. This theory is put trenchantly by: D. Bell, The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism, New York, Basic, 1976.

17. The term equilibrium is not meant in a static sense, but also includes dynamic, increasingly complex states of balance.

18. In contrast to Habermas, who speaks of functionalist reason, the term instrumental reason is used here. On the one hand instrumental reason is the established term (M. Horkheimer, Eclipse of Reason, New York, Oxford University Press, 1947), on the other hand it expresses more strongly a subject-object relation, which can be contrasted to the subject-subject relation implied by Habermas' term communicative reason. In contrast the term functionalist reason appears subjectless and unpolitical and accomodates a technocratic self-image of objective administration.

19. M. Horkheimer, T. W. Adorno, Dialectic of enlightenment, New York, Continuum, 1994.

20. With K. Eder, Geschichte als Lernprozeß? Zur Pathogenese politischer Modernität in Deutschland, Frankfurt/Main, Suhrkamp, 1985, this interaction of a "cultural variation mechanism" with an "institutional selection mechanism" can be understood as a "collective learning process" (p. 12f.).

21. This understanding of integral reason as the constant transformation of partial rationalities basically corresponds to Wolfgang Welsch's concept of "transversal reason", which transitionally combines opposing types of rationality. See: W. Welsch, Vernunft. Die zeitgenössische Vernunftkritik und das Konzept der transversalen Vernunft, reprint, Frankfurt/Main, Suhrkamp, 1996.

There are also clear similarities to Richard Münch's understanding of the modern age as interpenetration of spheres of action: R. Münch, Die Struktur der Moderne. Grundmuster und differentielle Gestaltung des institutionellen Aufbaus der modernen Gesellschaften, new edition, Frankfurt/Main, Suhrkamp, 1992.

22. A second deviation from Habermas' concept apart from the designation "instrumental reason" is the use of the term "Gemeinschaft" ["community"] as one of the lifeworld areas. In Habermas this integrative dimension of the lifeworld goes under the name of "Gesellschaft" ["society"] (J. Habermas, Theorie, vol. 2, p. 209), but at the same time he has already introduced the term Gesellschaft [society] as the combination of system and lifeworld (ibid p. 228). To avoid confusion through inconsistent terminology the term community is used here to denote the sphere of lifeworld integration. The term society is reserved as the generic term for system and lifeworld. A further alteration to Habermas' model is the addition to the system complex of the area science with the control medium knowledge (cf. H. Willke, Wissensbasierung und Wissensmanagement als Elemente reflektierter Modernität sozialer Systeme, in: L. Clausen (ed.), Gesellschaften im Umbruch. Verhandlungen des 27. Kongresses der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Soziologie in Halle an der Saale 1995, Frankfurt/Main [et al], Campus, 1996, p. 191-209). Lifeworld and system are thus symmetrically subdivided by the dimensions individual (personality, economy), universal (community, state) and intellectual (culture, science) life. Thus the paradigm allocates science to the area of instrumental thought &173; but to do justice to a comprehensive understanding of reason it requires the emancipatory-solidarity input from the lifeworld.

23. A concise overview of the German modernization development is provided by: T. Nipperdey, Probleme der Modernisierung in Deutschland, in: Saeculum 30 (1979), p. 292-303. For the Swedish development see: G. Therborn, Hur det hela började. När och varför det moderna Sverige blev vad det blev, in: U. Himmelstrand, G. Svensson (ed.), Sverige. Vardag och struktur. Sociologer beskriver det svenska samhället, Stockholm, Norstedt, 1988, p. 23-53.

24. For the idea of conceptual history, the ambiguous nature of concepts and differentiation of words and concepts see: R. Koselleck, Einleitung, in: O. Brunner, W. Conze, R. Koselleck (ed.), Geschichtliche Grundbegriffe. Historisches Lexikon zur politisch-sozialen Sprache in Deutschland, Vol. 1: A-D, Stuttgart, Klett-Cotta, 1972, p. XIII-XXVII and R. Koselleck, Begriffsgeschichte und Sozialgeschichte, in: R. Koselleck, Vergangene Zukunft. Zur Semantik geschichtlicher Zeiten, reprint, Frankfurt/Main, Suhrkamp, 1992, p. 107-129.

The concepts Volksgemeinschaft and folkhem are both directed against class struggle and anonymous mass society, both contain the vision of an organic community with both hierarchical and egalitarian tones. Before they became slogans of the National Socialists in Germany and the Social Democrats in Sweden, they were widely used in both countries across the whole political spectrum, but in particular by conservatives and the youth movement.

For the conceptual history of the concept of folkhem see: M. Hallberg, T. Jonsson, 'Allmänanda och självtukt'. Per Albin Hanssons ideologiska förändring och folkhemsretorikens framväxt, Uppsala, Universitet, 1993. The only work on the concept of Volksgemeinschaft is the study of Ernst F. Jurgens, The Concept of Volksgemeinschaft in Representative German Novels between 1918 and 1933, University of Iowa, 1938. The lack of a recent and politically oriented analytical treatment is a gap in the research because the term Volksgemeinschaft finds wide descriptive use in the current academic debate, to characterize the National Socialist social utopia.

A comparative overview of the conceptual history of Volk / folk is provided by L. Trägårdh, Varieties of Volkish Ideology. Sweden and Germany 1848-1933, in: B. Stråth (ed.), Language and the Construction of Class Identities. The Struggle for Discursive Power in Social Organisation. Scandinavia and Germany after 1800, Gothenburg, Universitet, 1990, p. 25-54, which is soon to be published in expanded form as a dissertation.

25. J. Habermas, The Theory of Communicative Action, Cambridge, Polity, 1989, Vol. 2, p. 322.

26. Y. Hirdman, Att lägga livet till rätta. Studier i svensk folkhemspolitik, Stockholm, Carlsson, 1989.

27. Wolfgang Kaschuba accordingly characterizes the people's community as "normative model of society and culture [...], which is to unify violently the evolved systems of everyday experience and everyday culture". W. Kaschuba, Lebenswelt und Kultur der unterbürgerlichen Schichten im 19. und 20. Jahrhundert, Munich, Oldenbourg 1990, p. 46.

28. H. Mommsen, Der Nationalsozialismus. Kumulative Radikalisierung und Selbstzerstörung des Regimes, in: Meyers Enzyklopädisches Lexikon, Mannheim [et al]: Bibliographisches Institut, 1976, p. 785-790.

29. "Wer aber vom Kapitalismus nicht reden will, sollte auch vom Faschismus schweigen", M. Horkheimer, Die Juden in Europa, in: H. Dubiel, A. Söllner (eds.), Wirtschaft, Recht und Staat im Nationalsozialismus. Analysen des Instituts für Sozialforschung 1939-1942, Frankfurt/Main, Suhrkamp, 1984, p. 33-53, here p. 33.

30. J. Habermas, The structural transformation of the public sphere: An inquiry into a category of Bourgeois society. Cambridge, Polity Press, 1989 (Swedish title: Borgerlig offentlighet)..

31. According to Toni Pierenkemper precisely the labour market offers "a good example of the often cited collaboration of history and sociology". See: T. Pierenkemper, Historische Arbeitsmarktforschung. Vorüberlegungen zu einem Forschungsprogramm, in: T. Pierenkemper, R. Tilly (eds.), Historische Arbeitsmarktforschung. Entstehung, Entwicklung und Probleme der Vermarktung der Arbeitskraft, Göttingen, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1982, p. 9-36, here p. 24. He regards labour market policy, as the link between the labour market and other parts of society, to be one of the central areas of labour market research (ibid p. 29).

32. See: A. Héritier (ed.), Policy-Analyse. Kritik und Neuorientierung, Opladen, Westdeutscher, 1993.


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