Woodrow Wilson And The Roots Of Modern Liberalism

Woodrow Wilson And The Roots Of Modern Liberalism

by Ronald J. Pestritto
     
 

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Woodrow Wilson's political philosophy, argues Pestritto (politics, U. of Dallas), remained consistent from his earliest writings, through his career as an academic political scientist and his later political career. His argument rests upon an analysis of Wilson's historical and political thinking, specifically in regard to the principles of the American founding.… See more details below

Overview

Woodrow Wilson's political philosophy, argues Pestritto (politics, U. of Dallas), remained consistent from his earliest writings, through his career as an academic political scientist and his later political career. His argument rests upon an analysis of Wilson's historical and political thinking, specifically in regard to the principles of the American founding. Wilson had an organic, historicist view of the state that led him to advocate for a more powerful, centralized national state and to advocate for the ability to interpret the constitution in accord with new historical contingencies. This argument leads Pestritto to conclude that Wilson, even as President, was not the anti-progressive many have claimed. Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR

Editorial Reviews

The Daily Standard
In his brilliant new book, Woodrow Wilson and the Roots of Modern Liberalism, Ronald Pestritto painstakingly documents Wilson's debt to Hegel.
— Paul Mirengoff and Scott Johnson
CHOICE
Pestritto offers an interesting read, with Wilson as a parallel to contemporary end of history commentary. Recommended.
What Would the Founders Think?
Ronald J. Pestrito’s book is an in-depth, methodical analysis of Wilson’s political philosophy. This dense, but relatively short 7 chapter volume is opened by placing Wilson in context with historical thinking and the founding of America. In the introduction, Pestrito lays out the foundation for the book. He contrasts the fundamental difference between Wilson’s political philosophy and that of the Founders. This difference stems from the framers’ core belief in inalienable, trans-historical truth and Wilson’s belief in historicism and the adapted tenets of German philosophers, notably Hegel.
Choice
Pestritto offers an interesting read, with Wilson as a parallel to contemporary end of history commentary. Recommended.
James R. Stoner
The 'Era of Big Government'—and the idea that the national government ought to be adequate to any task the people ask of it—did not creep up on America unaware. It was a deliberate project, grounded in a critique of the original Constitution, bolstered by a new political science, and guided by a thorough-going confidence in historical progress. With clarity, conviction, and plenty of evidence, R. J. Pestritto shows that, from his early days as a political scientist through his election to the presidency, Woodrow Wilson was consistently a central figure in the development of Progressivism and so of the Liberalism that dominated twentieth-century American public policy and political life. Though Wilson was no philosopher-king, Pestritto explains that our doctor-of-philosophy-president changed how we think about democracy and about America, in ways that ought to be reappraised but have yet to be undone.
James Ceaser
Ronald Pestritto’s book is the deepest and most comprehensive treatment to date of Woodrow Wilson’s political thought. Pestritto has produced a masterful study of the origins of Wilson’s theoretical views, and he has carefully shown the connections between those views and Wilson’s positions on major constitutional and institutional questions. All interested in American political thought will appreciate this important work.
The Daily Standard - Paul Mirengoff and Scott Johnson
In his brilliant new book, Woodrow Wilson and the Roots of Modern Liberalism, Ronald Pestritto painstakingly documents Wilson's debt to Hegel.
John Marini
In a work that cuts against much of the existing scholarship on Wilson, Pestritto shows that Wilson held coherent and consistent political principles throughout his life, and that these principles put Wilson at the heart of the Progressive movement. Pestritto's case relies on an impressive and meticulous study of Wilson's own words—speeches and writings taken from every stage of Wilson's life—which makes this book all the more persuasive.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780742515161
Publisher:
The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Inc
Publication date:
02/01/2005
Series:
American Intellectual Culture Series
Pages:
290
Product dimensions:
6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.69(d)

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