Spirit Of Community

Spirit Of Community

by Amitai Etzioni
     
 

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Acclaimed author and visionary social thinker Amitai Etzioni calls for a new balance between rights and responsibilities and a reawakened allegiance to the communities and institutions that sustain us. Etzioni shows how today's Americans can work to rebuild the family, cultivate tolerance, encourage character education in schools, and above all, strengthen

Overview

Acclaimed author and visionary social thinker Amitai Etzioni calls for a new balance between rights and responsibilities and a reawakened allegiance to the communities and institutions that sustain us. Etzioni shows how today's Americans can work to rebuild the family, cultivate tolerance, encourage character education in schools, and above all, strengthen communities. 8 charts.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Arguing that Americans must assume responsibilities commensurate with their rights, Etzioni, a founder of the Responsive Community movement, accessibly describes the movement's tenets of societal reconstruction. Communitarians, he avers, are neither majoritarians nor puritans, but believe that societal morality must be shored up through policies that strengthen child care, discourage divorce, promote moral education in schools and require high school graduates to perform national service. He calls for local communities to foster volunteerism and for a balance between self-help and social justice. Criticizing libertarians, Etzioni suggests moderate restraints on privacy like sobriety checkpoints and greater testing for HIV. To combat hate speech, he encourages not censorship but more speech. Perhaps least controversial is his Naderesque advocacy of public financing of elections, a ban on PACs and free broadcast time for candidates. Etzioni slights the question of income redistribution and the influence of pop culture, but his manifesto is a worthy starting point for debate. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Etzioni, who has acquired an international reputation for his advocacy of the ``communitarian'' point of view, defines communitarianism as a movement designed to ``bring about the changes in values, habits, and public policies that will allow us to do for society what the environmental movement seeks to do for nature: to safeguard and enhance our future.'' In this book, he sets forth an agenda for correcting the ``imbalance'' between rights and responsibilities in American society. His agenda is focused in particular on rebuilding families and schools to instill in our citizens a sense of responsibility to the interests of the community as a whole. While many of Etzioni's recommendations are grounded in common sense, his book fails to grapple with the many important philosophical issues raised by his dual critique of liberalism and conservatism. A more satisfying study from a similar perspective is Philip Selznick's The Moral Commonwealth ( LJ 10/1/92). Recommended for larger libraries.-- Kent Worcester, Social Science Research Council, New York

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780671885243
Publisher:
Touchstone
Publication date:
05/24/1994
Edition description:
1st Touchstone ed
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
1,272,644
Product dimensions:
0.74(w) x 5.50(h) x 8.50(d)

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