Democracy in America?

What Has Gone Wrong and What We Can Do About It

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Author: Benjamin I. Page,Martin Gilens

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022650901X

Category: Political Science

Page: 352

View: 9509

America faces daunting problems—stagnant wages, high health care costs, neglected schools, deteriorating public services. Yet the government consistently ignores the needs of its citizens, paying attention instead to donors and organized interests. Real issues are held hostage to demagoguery, partisanship beats practicality, and trust in government withers along with the social safety net. How did we get here? Through decades of dysfunctional government. In Democracy in America? veteran political observers Benjamin I. Page and Martin Gilens marshal an unprecedented array of evidence to show that while other countries have responded to a rapidly changing economy by helping people who’ve been left behind, the United States has failed to do so. Instead, we have actually exacerbated inequality, enriching corporations and the wealthy while leaving ordinary citizens to fend for themselves. What’s the solution? More democracy. More opportunity for citizens to shape what their government does. To repair our democracy, Page and Gilens argue, we must change the way we choose candidates and conduct our elections, reform our governing institutions, and curb the power of money in politics. By doing so, we can reduce polarization and gridlock, address pressing challenges, and enact policies that truly reflect the interests of average Americans. This book presents a damning indictment. But the situation is far from hopeless. With increased democratic participation as their guide, Page and Gilens lay out a set of proposals that would boost citizen participation, curb the power of money, and democratize the House and Senate. The only certainty is that inaction is not an option. Now is the time to act to restore and extend American democracy.

Democracy in America

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Author: Alexis de Tocqueville,Arthur Goldhammer

Publisher: Library of America

ISBN: 1931082545

Category: Philosophy

Page: 941

View: 3469

An influential study of America's national government, egalitarian ideals, and character offers reflections on the effect of majority rule on the rights of individuals and provides insight into the rewards and responsibilities of a democratic government, in a clear new translation of the nineteenth-century classic.

The Chicago Companion to Tocqueville's Democracy in America

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Author: James T. Schleifer

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226737055

Category: History

Page: 216

View: 1907

One of the greatest books ever to be written on the United States, Democracy in America continues to find new readers who marvel at the lasting insights Alexis de Tocqueville had into our nation and its political culture. The work is, however, as challenging as it is important; its arguments can be complex and subtle, and its sheer length can make it difficult for any reader, especially one coming to it for the first time, to grasp Tocqueville’s meaning. The Chicago Companion to Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America” is the first book written expressly to help general readers and students alike get the most out of this seminal work. Now James T. Schleifer, an expert on Tocqueville, has provided the background and information readers need in order to understand Tocqueville’s masterwork. In clear and engaging prose, Schleifer explains why Democracy in America is so important, how it came to be written, and how different generations of Americans have interpreted it since its publication. He also presents indispensable insight on who Tocqueville was, his trip to America, and what he meant by equality, democracy, and liberty. Drawing upon his intimate knowledge of Tocqueville’s papers and manuscripts, Schleifer reveals how Tocqueville’s ideas took shape and changed even in the course of writing the book. At the same time, Schleifer provides a detailed glossary of key terms and key passages, all accompanied by generous citations to the relevant pages in the University of Chicago Press Mansfield/Winthrop translation. The Chicago Companion will serve generations of readers as an essential guide to both the man and his work.

How Democracies Die

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Author: Steven Levitsky,Daniel Ziblatt

Publisher: Crown

ISBN: 1524762938

Category: History

Page: 320

View: 8216

Fateful alliances -- Gatekeeping in America -- The great Republican abdication -- Subverting democracy -- The guardrails of democracy -- The unwritten rules of American politics -- The unraveling -- Trump against the guardrails -- Saving democracy

Democracy in Chains

The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America

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Author: Nancy MacLean

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 1101980966

Category: History

Page: 334

View: 7930

"Focusing on Nobel Prize-winning economist James McGill Buchanan (1919-2013), whom Charles Koch funded and championed, MacLean elaborates on [what he sees as] the Koch brothers' insidious, dangerous manipulation of American politics. Based on Buchanan's papers as well as published sources, MacLean creates a ... portrait of an arrogant, uncompromising, and unforgiving man, stolid in his mission to 'save capitalism from democracy'"--

Democracy in America

And Two Essays on America

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Author: N.A

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 9780140447606

Category: Political Science

Page: 935

View: 4024

A study of America's national government, egalitarian ideals, and character offers reflections on the effect of majority rule on the rights of individuals and provides insight into the rewards and responsibilities of a democratic government, in a new translation that also includes Two Weeks in the Wilderness, the author's description of the Iroquois, and Excursion to Lake Oneida. Original.

Democracy in America

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Author: Alexis de Tocqueville

Publisher: BoD – Books on Demand

ISBN: 3732632156

Category: Fiction

Page: 492

View: 7867

Reproduction of the original: Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville

Democracy in America

Volume I

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Author: John Bigelow,Alexis de Tocqueville

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Democracy

Page: 416

View: 4334

Winner-Take-All Politics

How Washington Made the Rich Richer--and Turned Its Back on the Middle Class

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Author: Jacob S. Hacker,Paul Pierson

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1416588701

Category: Political Science

Page: 357

View: 5092

Analyzes the growing divide between the incomes of the wealthy class and those of middle-income Americans, exonerating popular suspects to argue that the nation's political system promotes greed and under-representation.

The State of Democracy in America

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Author: William J. Crotty

Publisher: Georgetown University Press

ISBN: 9781589014688

Category: Political Science

Page: 250

View: 2540

In this wide-ranging assessment of democracy in America today, fifteen respected scholars of American politics chart the strengths and weaknesses of the nation’s democratic mechanisms and outline the challenges that lie ahead. They focus not on specific policies or elections but on the quality of American political life, the representativeness of its governing institutions, and the issues of racial and economic equity. The contributors cover a broad spectrum of the American political process. Topics include the extent and nature of political participation, the relevance of political parties, political fundraising and its policy consequences, demographic change and its likely effect on the national political agenda, and the future of racial politics. Others explore how representative Congress really is today, how the market economy affects public policy, the use of impeachment as a political weapon, and the degree of corporate influence on the political process. A final chapter explores the circumstances likely to shape policy agendas over the course of the twenty-first century. Taken together, these essays provide a clear picture of political evolution during the past fifty years and discuss possible problems and issues of the future. Written for advanced undergraduate and graduate students, the book is a thoughtful, well-documented, critical analysis of contemporary American democracy.

Freedom Is an Endless Meeting

Democracy in American Social Movements

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Author: Francesca Polletta

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226924289

Category: Political Science

Page: 294

View: 643

Freedom Is an Endless Meeting offers vivid portraits of American experiments in participatory democracy throughout the twentieth century. Drawing on meticulous research and more than one hundred interviews with activists, Francesca Polletta challenges the conventional wisdom that participatory democracy is worthy in purpose but unworkable in practice. Instead, she shows that social movements have often used bottom-up decision making as a powerful tool for political change. Polletta traces the history of democracy in early labor struggles and pre-World War II pacifism, in the civil rights, new left, and women's liberation movements of the sixties and seventies, and in today's faith-based organizing and anti-corporate globalization campaigns. In the process, she uncovers neglected sources of democratic inspiration—Depression-era labor educators and Mississippi voting registration workers, among them—as well as practical strategies of social protest. But Freedom Is an Endless Meeting also highlights the obstacles that arise when activists model their democracies after familiar nonpolitical relationships such as friendship, tutelage, and religious fellowship. Doing so has brought into their deliberations the trust, respect, and caring typical of those relationships. But it has also fostered values that run counter to democracy, such as exclusivity and an aversion to rules, and these have been the fault lines around which participatory democracies have often splintered. Indeed, Polletta attributes the fragility of the form less to its basic inefficiency or inequity than to the gaps between activists' democratic commitments and the cultural models on which they have depended to enact those commitments. The challenge, she concludes, is to forge new kinds of democratic relationships, ones that balance trust with accountability, respect with openness to disagreement, and caring with inclusiveness. For anyone concerned about the prospects for democracy in America, Freedom Is an Endless Meeting will offer abundant historical, theoretical, and practical insights. "This is an excellent study of activist politics in the United States over the past century. . . . Assiduously researched, impressively informed by a great number of thoughtful interviews with key members of American social movements, and deeply engaged with its subject matter, the book is likely to become a key text in the study of grass-roots democracy in America."—Kate Fullbrook, Times Literary Supplement "Polletta's portrayal challenges the common assumption that morality and strategy are incompatible, that those who aim at winning must compromise principle while those who insist on morality are destined to be ineffective. . . . Rather than dwell on trying to explain the decline of 60s movements, Polletta shows how participatory democracy has become the guiding framework for many of today's activists."—Richard Flacks, Los Angeles Times Book Review "In Freedom Is an Endless Meeting, Francesca Polletta has produced a remarkable work of historical sociology. . . . She provides the fullest theoretical work of historical sociology. . . . She provides the fullest theoretical picture of participatory democracy, rich with nuance, ambiguity, and irony, that this reviewer has yet seen. . . . This wise book should be studied closely by both academics and by social change activists."—Stewart Burns, Journal of American History

Democracy in America

And Two Essays on America

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Author: Alexis Tocqueville

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0141915692

Category: Political Science

Page: 992

View: 9235

In 1831 Tocqueville set out from post-revolutionary France on a journey across America that would take him 9 months and cover 7,000 miles. The result was DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA: a subtle and prescient analysis of the life and institutions of 19th-century America. Tocqueville's study of the strengths and weaknesses of an evolving democratic society has been quoted by every American president since Eisenhower. It remains a key point of reference for any discussion of the American nation or the democratic system.

Free Expression and Democracy in America: A History (Large Print 16pt)

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Author: Stephen M. Feldman

Publisher: ReadHowYouWant.com

ISBN: 1459606043

Category: Political Science

Page: 544

View: 6313

From the 1798 Sedition Act to the war on terror, numerous presidents, members of Congress, Supreme Court justices, and local officials have endorsed the silencing of free expression. If the connection between democracy and the freedom of speech is such a vital one, why would so many governmental leaders seek to quiet their citizens? Free Expression and Democracy traces two rival traditions in American culture - suppression of speech and dissent as a form of speech - to provide an unparalleled overview of the law, history, and politics of individual rights in the United States. Charting the course of free expression alongside the nation's political evolution, from the birth of the Constitution to the quagmire of the Vietnam War, Stephen M. Feldman argues that our level of freedom is determined not only by the Supreme Court, but also by cultural, social, and economic forces. Along the way, he pinpoints the struggles of excluded groups - women, African Americans, and laborers - to participate in democratic government as pivotal to the development of free expression. In an age when our freedom of speech is once again at risk, this momentous book will be essential reading for legal historians, political scientists, and history buffs alike. This edition is in two volumes. The second volume ISBN is 9781459606050.

Democracy in Black

How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul

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Author: Eddie S. Glaude (Jr.)

Publisher: Crown

ISBN: 0804137412

Category: History

Page: 274

View: 6168

"A polemic on the state of black America that argues that we don't yet live in a post-racial society"--

Revolutionary France 1770-1880

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Author: François Furet

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

ISBN: 9780631198086

Category: History

Page: 642

View: 6545

Revolutionary France d is a vivid narrative history. It is also a radical reinterpretation of the period, and testimony to the power both of ideas and of personality in movements of the past.

Parrot and Olivier in America

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Author: Peter Carey

Publisher: Random House Canada

ISBN: 0307358364

Category: Fiction

Page: 384

View: 939

From the two-time Booker Prize-winning author: an irrepressible, audacious, trenchantly funny new novel set in the 19th century and inspired in part by the life of Alexis de Tocqueville. With dazzling exuberance and all the richness of characterization, story, and language that we have come to expect from this superlative writer, Peter Carey explores the birth of democracy, the limits of friendship and whether people really can remake themselves in a New World. The two men at the heart of the novel couldn't be any more different: Olivier is the son of French aristocrats who (barely) survived the French Revolution. Parrot is the motherless son of an itinerate English printer. But when young Parrot is separated from his father (after a stupendous conflagration at a house of forgery) he runs into the powerful embrace of a one-armed marquis who will be his conduit - like it or not - into a life as closely (mis)allied with Olivier's as if they were connected by blood. And when Olivier sets sail for America - ostensibly to make a study of the American penal system, but more precisely to save his neck from the latest guillotineurs - Parrot, unable to loosen the Marquis's grip, is there too: as spy, scribe, comptroller, protector, foe and foil. As the narrative unfurls, shifting between the perspectives of Olivier and Parrot, between their picaresque adventures apart and together, in love and politics, prisons and finance, homelands and brave new lands - a most unlikely friendship begins to take hold. From the Hardcover edition.

Populism's Power

Radical Grassroots Democracy in America

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Author: Laura Grattan

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190277645

Category: Political Science

Page: 272

View: 6846

Uprisings such as the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street signal a resurgence of populist politics in America, pitting the people against the establishment in a struggle over control of democracy. In the wake of its conservative capture during the Nixon and Reagan eras, and given its increasing ubiquity as a mainstream buzzword of politicians and pundits, democratic theorists and activists have been eager to abandon populism to right-wing demagogues and mega-media spin-doctors. Decades of liberal scholarship have reinforced this shift, turning the term "populism" into a pejorative in academic and public discourse. At best, they conclude that populism encourages an "empty" wish to express a unified popular will beyond the mediating institutions of government; at worst, it has been described as an antidemocratic temperament prone to fomenting backlash against elites and marginalized groups. Populism's Power argues that such routine dismissals of populism reinforce liberalism as the end of democracy. Yet, as long as democracy remains true to its meaning, that is, "rule by the people," democratic theorists and activists must be able to give an account of the people as collective actors. Without such an account of the people's power, democracy's future seems fixed by the institutions of today's neoliberal, managerial states, and not by the always changing demographics of those who live within and across their borders. Laura Grattan looks at how populism cultivates the aspirations of ordinary people to exercise power over their everyday lives and their collective fate. In evaluating competing theories of populism she looks at a range of populist moments, from cultural phenomena such as the Chevrolet ad campaign for "Our Country, Our Truck," to the music of Leonard Cohen, and historical and contemporary populist movements, including nineteenth-century Populism, the Tea Party, broad-based community organizing, and Occupy Wall Street. While she ultimately expresses ambivalence about both populism and democracy, she reopens the idea that grassroots movements--like the insurgent farmers and laborers, New Deal agitators, and Civil Rights and New Left actors of US history--can play a key role in democratizing power and politics in America.