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Tempo Social

versão impressa ISSN 0103-2070versão On-line ISSN 1809-4554


MINHOTO, Laurindo Dias  e  GONCALVES, Guilherme Leite. New German ideology? Niklas Luhmann's stinging social theory. Tempo soc. [online]. 2015, vol.27, n.2, pp.21-43. ISSN 1809-4554.

This article discusses some possibilities for a critical interpretation of Luhmann's systems theory. On the one hand, it could be grasped as a sophisticated sociological new account of well-known modern social pathologies, such as reification; on the other, and in tension with this reading, it could be seen as a normative model for the reciprocal mediation between system and environment in which neither blind tautologies nor colonisations would have place. This theoretical move seems to be analogous to Adorno's negative dialectics between subject and object and the involuntary promise it contains could only be fully realised under other social conditions. The article also tries to advance a critique of neoliberalism conceptualised in systems theoretical terms as a de-differentiation machinery that aims at establishing the primacy of economic rationality and the formation of "industries" in different social spheres.

Palavras-chave : System theory; Luhmann, ideology; Negative dialectics, Adorno; Neoliberalism.

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