Maria Sidorova 1
  • 1 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation

The Role of the Judging Spectator in Politics: Arendt’s Approach

2019, vol. 18, No. 3, pp. 245–259 [issue contents]
We can find the opposition between the judging spectator and the judging actor in Arendt’s unfinished theory of judgment. In analyzing this opposition, some interpreters have come to the conclusion that Arendt finally defines political judgment as the contemplative ability of the silent spectator who is not needed in public. This article argues against this interpretation of Arendt’s approach to the judging spectator, and deals with the fact that Arendt gives the judging spectator the functions of the political narrator. The judging spectator cannot be interpreted only as a contemplative subject in her theory. Certainly, in Arendt’s later texts, judgment is seen as an ability to evaluate the political content not so much of one’s own actions, but the actions of the participants of common life. However, the spectator as the author of judgment cannot be silent since they are included in the political world. This article reveals Arendt’s understanding of the judging spectator in connection to her practical approach to judgment. In the results of the research, it can be said that the judging spectator can be interpreted as a participant of the common political world because speech is needed. While analyzing Arendt’s concept of speech as a part of her action theory, it is possible to state that the judging spectator is the narrator. This person is not the one who contemplates, but is the one who publicly speaks about the actions, and thus forms the political space.
Citation: Sidorova M. (2019) The Role of the Judging Spectator in Politics: Arendt’s Approach [Роль судящего зрителя в пространстве политического: подход Х. Арендт]. The Russian Sociological Review, vol. 18, no 3, pp. 245-259 (in Russian)
The Russian Sociological Review
Office A-205
21/4 Staraya Basmannaya Ulitsa, Building 1
Deputy Editor: Marina Pugacheva
Rambler's Top100 rss