Social life as collective struggle: closure theory and the problem of solidarity
In recent years, all over the globe we have seen intensifying economic exploitation,
political disenfranchisement, social marginalization and cultural repression in all
kinds of political regimes, from liberal democratic to authoritarian and dictatorial.
Although the strategies vary with regard to regime and context, in all of them we observe
that while a growing number of social groups are speaking out and rising against
them, a presumably much higher number of groups do not. In this article, I argue that
all these processes can be conceived as aspects of ongoing closure struggles in social
life. However, in order to understand why some social groups are able to fight against
closure strategies while others are not, closure theory in its current state of elaboration
is not of any help. While it operates with the term solidarization, it does not offer any
explanation of how such acting in solidarity may become possible in closure struggles.
The article is a mainly theoretical contribution of how to solve this problem.
Keywords: social closure, struggle, solidarization, democracy