Community and Political Thought Today

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 1998-09-01
  • Publisher: Praeger Pub Text
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There is a crisis in America revolving around social and political life, and the contributors to this essay collection believe it has provoked a renewed attention to the issue of community in political thought. The 14 essays approach the question of community and political thought from a variety of perspectives, ranging from political philosophy to social theory. All the essays, however, share the concern of the opening essay by Hertzke and McRorie about "moral ecology," or determining what is required for a vital and free social and political life and preserving it from erosion by individualism in its various forms. Two of the essays, by Jardine and Stier, deal with understanding the communitarian impulse. Three, by Frohnen, Stone, and Woolfolk, evaluate perhaps the first major contribution to the communitarian movement, Habits of the Heart. While McClay's chapter seeks to restore the connection between federalism and communitarianism, Sharpe's essay connects the liberal-communitarian debate to the classic works of de Tocqueville and Arendt. Two essays, by Knippenberg and Lawler, criticize the quirky communitarianism of America's leading professor of philosophy, Richard Rorty. Lawler also criticizes Bloom for his similarity to Rorty, joining Nichols in her discussion of Bloom's excessive debt to Rousseau. McDaniel and Mahoney present unfashionable appreciations, not without criticism, of the achievement of Leo Strauss's illiberal if not exactly communitarian thought. Finally, Anderson discusses Raymond Aron's prudent opposition to the oxymoronic global community. This is a unique and significant collection for all students and researchers interested in contemporary social and political thought.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix(2)
Introduction xi
1. The Concept of Moral Ecology
Allen D. Hertzke
Chris McRorie
2. Are Communitarians "Premodern" or "Postmodern"? The Place of Communitarian Thought in Contemporary Political Theory
Murray Jardine
3. How Much of Communitarianism Is Left (and Right)?
Marc Stier
4. Does Robert Bellah Care About History?
Bruce Frohnen
5. Universal Benevolence, Adjective Justice, and the Rousseauean Way
Brad Lowell Stone
6. Communitarianism and the Federal Idea
Wilfred M. McClay
7. Readings of Therapeutic Culture: From Philip Rieff to Robert Bellah
Alan Woolfolk
8. Advice from a Tocquevillian Liberal: Arendt, Tocqueville, and the Liberal-Communitarian Debate
Barry Sharpe
9. Liberal Ironism and the Decay of Citizenship
Joseph Knippenberg
10. Bloom's Ineffectual Response to Rorty: Pragmatism, Existentialism, and American Political Thought Today
Peter Augustine Lawler
11. Romanticism, Cultural Literacy, and the Great Books: The Goals of Education
Mary P. Nichols
12. The Illiberal Leo Strauss
Robb A. McDaniel
13. The Experience of Totalitarianism and the Recovery of Nature: Reflections on Philosophy and Community in the Thought of Solzhenitsyn, Havel, and Strauss
Daniel J. Mahoney
14. The Universal and the Particular: Of Nations and Empires in Raymond Aron's Thought
Brian C. Anderson
For Further Reading 235(4)
Index 239(4)
About the Contributors 243

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