Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism (New in Paper)by Sheldon S. Wolin
Pub. Date: 02/21/2010
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Democracy is struggling in Americaby now this statement is almost cliché. But what if the country is no longer a democracy at all? In Democracy Incorporated, Sheldon Wolin considers the unthinkable: has America unwittingly morphed into a new and strange kind of political hybrid, one where economic and state powers are conjoined and virtually/i>… See more details below
Democracy is struggling in Americaby now this statement is almost cliché. But what if the country is no longer a democracy at all? In Democracy Incorporated, Sheldon Wolin considers the unthinkable: has America unwittingly morphed into a new and strange kind of political hybrid, one where economic and state powers are conjoined and virtually unbridled? Can the nation check its descent into what the author terms "inverted totalitarianism"?
Wolin portrays a country where citizens are politically uninterested and submissiveand where elites are eager to keep them that way. At best the nation has become a "managed democracy" where the public is shepherded, not sovereign. At worst it is a place where corporate power no longer answers to state controls. Wolin makes clear that today's America is in no way morally or politically comparable to totalitarian states like Nazi Germany, yet he warns that unchecked economic power risks verging on total power and has its own unnerving pathologies. Wolin examines the myths and mythmaking that justify today's politics, the quest for an ever-expanding economy, and the perverse attractions of an endless war on terror. He argues passionately that democracy's best hope lies in citizens themselves learning anew to exercise power at the local level.
Democracy Incorporated is one of the most worrying diagnoses of America's political ills to emerge in decades. It is sure to be a lightning rod for political debate for years to come.
In a new preface, Wolin describes how the Obama administration, despite promises of change, has left the underlying dynamics of managed democracy intact.
- Princeton University Press
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- With a New preface by the author
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- Product dimensions:
- 6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.00(d)
Table of Contents
Preface to the Paperback Edition ix
Chapter 1 Myth in the Making 4
Chapter 2 Totalitarianism's Inversion: Beginnings of the Imaginary of a Permanent Global War 15
Chapter 3 Totalitarianism's Inversion, Democracy's Perversion 41
Chapter 4 The New World of Terror 69
Chapter 5 The Utopian Theory of Superpower: The Official Version 82
Chapter 6 The Dynamics of Transformation 95
Chapter 7 The Dynamics of the Archaic 114
Chapter 8 The Politics of Superpower: Managed Democracy 131
Chapter 9 Intellectual Elites against Democracy 159
Chapter 10 Domestic Politics in the Era of Superpower and Empire 184
Chapter 11 Inverted Totalitarianism: Antecedents and Precedents 211
Chapter 12 Demotic Moments 238
Chapter 13 Democracy's Prospects: Looking Backwards 259
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Professor Wolin's book deserves a careful, critical review that I am not able to write. The work very much impresses me. I think it an important and helpful work. Without way of French literary criticism or Frankfurt School theoretical sources, he presents a comprehensive and fundamental analysis of political and economic life in both the United States and the world. I had not realized at first that I had read Professor Wolin decades ago when I was an undergraduate. The argument is original, well-founded, even practical, and constructive. I will read it again soon and read it more closely.
HE TRIES TO MAKE AN ARGUMENT THAT THE PLUTOCRACY IN WASHINGTON IS RUN BY CORPORATE TECHNOCRATS AND THAT THEY WANT TO CREAT A FASCIST STATE. HE RUNS INTO PROBLEMS WHEN HE TRIES TO ARGUE THAT THIS IS DIFFERENT FROM THE GOOD OLD FASHION FASCISM OF THE WORLD WAR II ERA. BUT IF YOU KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT HITLER'S, TOJO'S AMD MUSSOLINI'S INVOLVEMENT WITH CORPORATION AND TECHNOCRATS THAT RAISED THEM TO POWER YOU REALIZE THAT MR.WOLIN FAILS TO MAKE HIS ARGUMENT.