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Tocqueville and the Nature of Democracy
     

Tocqueville and the Nature of Democracy

by Pierre Manent
 

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One of France's leading and most controversial political thinkers explores the central themes of Tocqueville's writings: the democratic revolution and the modern passion for equality. What becomes of people when they are overcome by this passion and how does it transform the contents of life? Pierre Manent's analysis concludes that the growth of state power and

Overview

One of France's leading and most controversial political thinkers explores the central themes of Tocqueville's writings: the democratic revolution and the modern passion for equality. What becomes of people when they are overcome by this passion and how does it transform the contents of life? Pierre Manent's analysis concludes that the growth of state power and the homogenization of society are two primary consequences of equalizing conditions. The author shows the contemporary relevance of Tocqueville's teaching: to love democracy well, one must love it moderately. Manent examines the prophetic nature of Tocqueville's writings with breadth, clarity, and depth. His findings are both timely and highly relevant as people in Eastern Europe and around the world are grappling with the fragile, complicated, and frequently contradictory nature of democracy. This book is essential reading for students and scholars of political theory and political philosophy, as well as general readers interested in the nature of modern democracy.

Author Biography: Pierre Manent, former editor of the journal "Commentaire" and assistant to Raymond Aron, earned an advanced degree in philosophy at the Ecole Normal Superieure. He is currently Director of Studies at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales and co-editor of the journal "La Pense Politique."

Editorial Reviews

The Review Of Politics
. . . we are indebted to the translator and publishers for making available. Manent's unsurpassed contribution to the appreciation and understanding of that new science of politics, . . .
— Mathie, William
American Political Science Review
A stunning intellectual achievement worthy of a place in the first circle of Tocqueville studies. . . . Pierre Manent's book illuminates the core of Tocqueville's political philosophy . . . excellent book..
Choice
This pathbreaking book may well be the most provocative and insightful study of Tocqueville ever published. It is rightly described in Harvey Mansfield's foreword as 'elegant and profound.' This provocative topic is explored with startling acuity, and few readers will leave this book without a new appreciation of Tocqueville's importance..
CHOICE
This pathbreaking book may well be the most provocative and insightful study of Tocqueville ever published. It is rightly described in Harvey Mansfield's foreword as 'elegant and profound.' This provocative topic is explored with startling acuity, and few readers will leave this book without a new appreciation of Tocqueville's importance.
Social and Behavioral Sciences
This pathbreaking book may well be the most provocative and insightful study of Tocqueville ever published. This provacative topic is explored with startling acuity and few readers will leave this book without a new appreciation of Tocqueville's importance.
First Things
masterfully presents the story . . .
The Review of Politics
. . . we are indebted to the translator and publishers for making available. Manent's unsurpassed contribution to the appreciation and understanding of that new science of politics, . . .
— William Mathie
Albert E. Gunn and Staff
Manent's unobtrusively extraordinary recapitulation of Tocqueville demonstrates that philosophic detachment need not, and indeed cannot, exist without intense devotion to ordinary experience. His is a book to be read.
— John C. McCarthy, The Catholic University of America
Ethics, January 1998 - A.D.
Manent goes beyond the usual treatment of this familiar Tocquevillian topic... offers enlightening analysis of themes sometimes glossed over in other accounts of Tocqueville.
Review of Politics - William Mathie
. . . we are indebted to the translator and publishers for making available. Manent's unsurpassed contribution to the appreciation and understanding of that new science of politics, . . .
Albert E. Gunn and Staff - John C. McCarthy
Manent's unobtrusively extraordinary recapitulation of Tocqueville demonstrates that philosophic detachment need not, and indeed cannot, exist without intense devotion to ordinary experience. His is a book to be read.
Ethics: An International Journal of Social, Political, and Legal Philosophy, January 1998 - .
Manent goes beyond the usual treatment of this familiar Tocquevillian topic... offers enlightening analysis of themes sometimes glossed over in other accounts of Tocqueville.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780847681150
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
12/19/1995
Pages:
144
Product dimensions:
6.18(w) x 9.24(h) x 0.89(d)

Meet the Author

Pierre Manent, former editor of the journal Commentaire and assistant to Raymond Aron, earned an advanced degree in philosophy at the Ecole Normal Superieure. He is currently Director of Studies at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales and co-editor of the journal La Pense Politique.

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