Public Intellectuals: A Study of Decline, With a New Preface and Epilogue

Public Intellectuals: A Study of Decline, With a New Preface and Epilogue

5.0 1
by Richard A. Posner
     
 

ISBN-10: 0674012461

ISBN-13: 9780674012462

Pub. Date: 10/30/2003

Publisher: Harvard

In this timely book, the first comprehensive study of the modern American public intellectual--that individual who speaks to the public on issues of political or ideological moment--Richard Posner charts the decline of a venerable institution that included worthies from Socrates to John Dewey.

With the rapid growth of the media in recent years, highly visible

Overview

In this timely book, the first comprehensive study of the modern American public intellectual--that individual who speaks to the public on issues of political or ideological moment--Richard Posner charts the decline of a venerable institution that included worthies from Socrates to John Dewey.

With the rapid growth of the media in recent years, highly visible forums for discussion have multiplied, while greater academic specialization has yielded a growing number of narrowly trained scholars. Posner tracks these two trends to their inevitable intersection: a proliferation of modern academics commenting on topics outside their ken. The resulting scene--one of off-the-cuff pronouncements, erroneous predictions, and ignorant policy proposals--compares poorly with the performance of earlier public intellectuals, largely nonacademics whose erudition and breadth of knowledge were well suited to public discourse.

Leveling a balanced attack on liberal and conservative pundits alike, Posner describes the styles and genres, constraints and incentives, of the activity of public intellectuals. He identifies a market for this activity--one with recognizable patterns and conventions but an absence of quality controls. And he offers modest proposals for improving the performance of this market--and the quality of public discussion in America today.

This paperback edition contains a new preface and and a new epilogue.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674012462
Publisher:
Harvard
Publication date:
10/30/2003
Pages:
468
Product dimensions:
6.12(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Preface, 2003

Introduction

Part One: General Theoretical and Empirical Analysis

1. Setting the Stage

2. The Market for Public Intellectuals

3. Care and Insight

4. Prediction and Influence

5. More Public, Less Intellectual

Part Two: Genre Studies

6. The Literary Critic as Public Intellectual

7. Political Satire

8. The Jeremiah School

9. The Public Philosopher

10. The Public Intellectual and the Law

Conclusion: Improving the Market

Epilogue, 2003

Acknowledgments

Index

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Public Intellectuals: A Study of Decline, With a New Preface and Epilogue 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago