Real Civil Societies: Dilemmas of Institutionalization

Overview

In recent social and political theory the term 'civil society' has achieved renewed currency. Traditionally used in a normative or 'ideal-type' sense, the term describes a form of social organization - that is simply neither economic nor political - where democracy, liberty and widespread solidarity are essential regulatory concepts.

Written from an empirical social-science perspective by some of the world's most important social theorists, this volume is a critical examination ...

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Overview

In recent social and political theory the term 'civil society' has achieved renewed currency. Traditionally used in a normative or 'ideal-type' sense, the term describes a form of social organization - that is simply neither economic nor political - where democracy, liberty and widespread solidarity are essential regulatory concepts.

Written from an empirical social-science perspective by some of the world's most important social theorists, this volume is a critical examination of the normative sense of 'civil society'. It includes analyses of civil society and democracy, citizenship, race and ethnicity, and post-communism.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Jeffrey Alexander is Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Los Angeles

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Table of Contents

Introduction - Jeffrey C Alexander
Civil Society I, II, III: Constructing an Empirical Concept from Normative Controversies and Historical Transformations
PART ONE: UNCIVIL HIERARCHIES
Banfield's Amoral Familism Revisited - Elisa P Reis
Implications of High Inequality Structures for Civil Society
Between Economic Dissolution and the Return of the Social - Michael Pusey
The Contest for Civil Society in Australia
Civil Society, Patronage, and Democracy - Luis Roniger
Civil Society and Uncivil Organizations - G[um]oran Ahrne
PART TWO: BIFURCATING DISCOURSES
Citizen and Enemy as Symbolic Classification - Jeffrey C Alexander
On the Polarizing Discourse of Civil Society
Barbarism and Civility in the Discourses of Fascism, Communism and Democracy - Philip Smith
Variations on a Set of Themes
The Racial Discourse of Civil Society - Ronald N Jacobs
The Rodney King Affair and the City of Los Angeles
PART THREE: ARBITRARY FOUNDINGS
Neither Faith nor Commerce - David Zaret
Printing and the Unintended Origins of English Public Opinion
Mistrusting Civility - Piotr Sztompka
Predicament of Post-Communist Society
The Public Sphere and a European Civil Society - V[ac]ictor P[ac]erez-D[ac]iaz

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