Why Do Ruling Classes Fear History?: And Other Questions


In "Why do Ruling Classes Fear History," and Other Questions, Harvey Kaye shows how our present-day political and economic elites stand in a long line of governing classes which have been eager to declare an end to the making of history.

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In "Why do Ruling Classes Fear History," and Other Questions, Harvey Kaye shows how our present-day political and economic elites stand in a long line of governing classes which have been eager to declare an end to the making of history.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This collection of an academic's essays and reviews aims to invigorate America's lagging Left. Kaye warns against what he sees as conservative efforts to create ``a political culture of lowered expectations'' and, in the title essay, argues that history remains ``a process of struggle for freedom and for justice.'' He supports the much-criticized National History Standards as reflecting often-neglected bottom-up history and urges his colleagues to push their students to become publicly engaged as social and political critics. He finds inspiration in the works of Tom Paine, C. Wright Mills and E.P. Thompson and offers sympathetic reviews of works by Russell Jacoby, John Sayles and Benjamin Barber. For all his passion, however, Kaye, who teaches social change and development at the University of Wisconsin, is mainly addressing the converted. (Jan.)
Library Journal
In this collection of articles, lectures, and book reviews, Kaye (Univ. of Wisconsin-Green Bay) explores the value of knowledge and the power of history to liberate. He warns against the efforts of conservative intellectuals to declare that the struggle for democracy is over and that we are now at "the end of history." Kaye is confident, however, that even in the face of the triumph of capitalism and of a profound crisis on the left, we will yet witness resurgent struggles to create a truly democratic society. He faults his colleagues on the academic left for ignoring the crucial issues of curriculum and pedagogy at a time when public education is under attack from the right. Though he discusses important issues, Kaye's writing is tendentious and rambling. An optional purchase for academic libraries.-Harry Frumerman, formerly with Hunter Coll., CUNY
Kaye (social change and development, U. of Wisconsin-Green Bay) calls on intellectuals of the Left to renew the struggle for liberty and equality, in essays originally written as lectures, articles, and reviews. He examines the value of knowledge and the power of history to liberate, and criticizes the efforts on the part of conservatives to promote the view that the struggle for democracy is finished with the end of the Cold War. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312172275
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 7/15/1997
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.49 (w) x 8.24 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Table of Contents

1 A Note in Memory of Isaac Deutscher, Historian and Socialist Intellectual (1907-1967) 3
2 Why Do Ruling Classes Fear History? The 1994 Deutscher Memorial Lecture 7
3 The Revolutionary Overthrow of Socialism? 29
4 The Age of Revolution Past and Present: A Note on Democracy and Capitalism in the Spring of 1989 37
5 The End of History?... Not! 41
6 Photography and Historical Consciousness: Nicaragua, 1978-1979 51
7 The Nobel Prize, the Memory Prize, and the Twentieth Century 59
8 The Making of American Memory? 63
9 Ideas Do Have Consequences: A Note on Rush, Newt, and the Culture Wars 75
10 All That Is Solid Melts into Air ... or Baseball and Capitalism, the View from Left Field 81
11 From Bases to Superstructures: The Great Transformation of Baseball 85
12 Should the Fact That We Live in a Democratic Society Make a Difference in What Our Schools Are Like? 99
13 A Radical Theology for Democratic Education 107
14 Schooling for a Democratic America? 119
15 The Liberal Arts and Democracy 127
16 The Ends of History? The Question of National Standards 131
17 From Lessons from History to National Standards: Questions of Class, Labor, and American Radicalism 135
18 Preparing the Next Generation of Public Intellectuals 151
19 Radicals and the Making of American Democracy: Toward a New Narrative of American History 163
20 American Radicalism Past and Present: An Interview 175
21 Tom Paine and the Making of the American Revolution 183
22 Redeeming Reason and Freedom: The Challenge of C. Wright Mills 193
23 A Tribute to E. P. Thompson, Marxist Historian and Radical Democrat (1924-1993) 199
24 Whither the American Left? 219
25 The Last Intellectuals or Teachers for a Democratic Society? 225
26 Whither America? 239
27 The New American Crisis 243
Notes 251
Index 267
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