Reconsidering the Democratic Public / Edition 1

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Overview

A re-examination of the evidence about citizens' capacity for self-governance and what it means for the future of democratic politics, from both empirical and normative perspectives. Are ordinary citizens capable of governing themselves? For more than three decades, social scientists have accumulated evidence of the undemocratic propensities of many ordinary citizens. This has caused some to worry about the stability of existing democratic institutions, while others argue that the institutions themselves are the problem: politics needs to be democratized further, giving citizens more opportunities to practice democratic politics and acquire democratic values. The thirty-three contributors to this volume enter this debate with new evidence on citizens' capacity for deliberative politics. They argue that previous methods of investigation significantly underestimate people's ability to govern themselves, and that the prospects for democracy are better than conventional wisdom suggests. Realization of these prospects will depend on citizens grasping the interplay of emotions and reason in political life, creating new opportunities for citizen deliberation, and reinvigorating the institutions of representative government. Theories of democracy in turn will have to accommodate this changing reality as citizens show themselves to be self-determining in their political activities.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780271009278
  • Publisher: Penn State University Press
  • Publication date: 8/4/1993
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 496
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.19 (d)

Meet the Author

George E. Marcus is Professor of Political Science at Williams College and co-author of Political Tolerance and American Democracy (1982).

Russell L. Hanson is Associate Professor of Political Science at Indiana University and author of The Democratic Imagination in America (1985).

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Preface: Toward a More Democratic Political Science
Introduction: The Practice of Democratic Theory 1
1 The Rational Public and Democracy 35
2 Reductionist Political Science and Democracy 65
3 Politicians, Self-Interest, and Ideas 73
4 Self-Interest and Political Transformation 91
5 Political Freedom: A Sociopsychological Analysis 113
6 Freedom in American Democracy: A Commentary on Gibson's "Political Freedom" 139
7 Duty Is a Four-Letter Word: Democratic Citizenship in the Liberal Polity 147
8 In Search of a Citizen Ethic 173
9 Disjunction and Ambivalence in Citizens' Political Outlooks 187
10 Theory, Citizenship, and Democracy 211
11 Thinking About Political Tolerance, More or Less, with More or Less Information 225
12 Passion and Reason in Political Life: The Organization of Affect and Cognition and Political Tolerance 249
13 Deliberation, Tolerance, and Democracy 273
14 Can Emotion Supply the Place of Reason? Comments on the Chapters on Passion and Tolerance 287
15 Nonverbal Behavior, Emotions, and Democratic Leadership 307
16 Democratic Leadership, Reason, and Emotion 333
17 Democratic Discussion 347
18 Framing Democratic Discussion 379
19 Political Incorporation and Racial Politics 393
20 Political Incorporation and Democratic Theory 417
21 "Private" Coercion and Democratic Theory: The Case of Gender-Based Violence 427
22 Sexual Violence, the Public-Private Distinction, and the Liberal State 451
List of Contributors 461
Index 467
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