In After the Public Turn, author Frank Farmer argues that counterpublics and the people who make counterpublics—“citizen bricoleurs”—deserve a more prominent role in our scholarship and in our classrooms. Encouraging students to understand and consider resistant or oppositional discourse is a viable route toward mature participation as citizens in a democracy.
Farmer examines two very different kinds of publics, cultural and disciplinary, and discusses two counterpublics within those broad categories: zine discourses and certain academic discourses. By juxtaposing these two significantly different kinds of publics, Farmer suggests that each discursive world can be seen, in its own distinct way, as a counterpublic, an oppositional social formation that has a stake in widening or altering public life as we know it.
Drawing on major figures in rhetoric and cultural theory, Farmer builds his argument about composition teaching and its relation to the public sphere, leading to a more sophisticated understanding of public life and a deeper sense of what democratic citizenship means for our time.
Since the dawn of the republic, faith in social equality, religious freedom, and the right to engage in civic activism have constituted our national creed. In this bracing history, Kathleen D. McCarthy traces the evolution of these ideals, exploring the impact of philanthropy and volunteerism on America from 1700 to 1865. What results is a vital reevaluation of public life during the pivotal decades leading up to the Civil War.
The market revolution, participatory democracy, and voluntary associations have all been closely linked since the birth of the United States. American Creed explores the relationships among these three institutions, showing how charities and reform associations forged partnerships with government, provided important safety valves for popular discontent, and sparked much-needed economic development. McCarthy also demonstrates how the idea of philanthropy became crucially wedded to social activism during the Jacksonian era. She explores how acts of volunteerism and charity became involved with the abolitionist movement, educational patronage, the struggle against racism, and female social justice campaigns. What resulted, she contends, were heated political battles over the extent to which women and African Americans would occupy the public stage.
Tracing, then, the evolution of civil society and the pivotal role of philanthropy in the search for and exercise of political and economic power, this book will prove essential to anyone interested in American history and government.
In March 2009, the Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE) was briefly taken over by a Christian faction. Their coup was overturned within a matter of weeks, but the episode highlighted a variety of issues, including the role of religion in civil society, sex education, homosexuality, state intervention and media engagement. Although the immediate issue was control of an activist group concerned with women's rights, it has implications for the agendas and concerns of NGOs, 'culture wars', the processes of citizenry mobilization, mass participation and noisy democracy, and liberal voices in contemporary Singapore.
In this book, academics and public intellectuals examine the AWARE saga within the context of Singapore's civil society, considering the political and historical background and how the issues it raised relate to contemporary societal trends. In addition to documenting a milestone event for Singapore's civil society, the authors offer provocative interpretations that will interest a broad range of readers.
China's Urban Transition
John Friedmann University of Minnesota Press, 2005 Library of Congress HT384.C6F75 2005 | Dewey Decimal 307.760951
Though China's urban history reaches back over five thousand years, it is only in the last quarter century that urbanization has emerged as a force of widespread social transformation while a massive population shift from country to city has brought about a dramatic revolution in China's culture, politics, and economy. Employing a historical perspective, John Friedmann presents a succinct, readable account and interpretation of how this transition - one of the most momentous phenomena in contemporary history - has occurred. China's Urban Transition synthesizes a broad array of research to provide the first integrated treatment of the many processes that encompass the multi-layered meaning of urbanization: regional policy, the upsurge of rural industries, migration, expanding spheres of personal autonomy, and the governance of city building. John Friedmann's detailed analysis suggests that the nation's economic development has been driven more by social forces from within than by global capital. This leads directly to the epic story of rural migration to major urban regions, the policies used to restrain and direct this "avalanche" of humanity on the move, and the return of many migrants to their home communities, where the process of urbanization continues. Focusing on everyday life in cities, he also shows how this social transformation extends to the most intimate spheres of people's lives. In conclusion, the author raises the question of a "sustainable" urban development and its relation with China's own past, values, and institutions. Friedmann predicts that within ten years China - already the most powerful country in East Asia - will have become a major power in the world. With historical depth, interpretive insight, and interdisciplinary breadth, this book offers an unparalleled introduction to China's transformation.
A civil society is one in which a democratic government and a market economy operate together. The idea of the civil economy--encompassing a democratic government and a market economy--presumes that people can solve social problems within the market itself. This book explores the relationship between the two, examining the civil underpinnings of capitalism and investigating the way a civil economy evolves in history and is developed for the future by careful planning.
Severyn T. Bruyn describes how people in three sectors--government, business, and the Third Sector (nonprofits and civil groups)--can develop an accountable, self-regulating, profitable, humane, and competitive system of markets that could be described as a civil economy. He examines how government officials can organize markets to reduce government costs; how local leaders deal with global corporations that would unfairly exploit their community resources; and how employees can become coparticipants in the development of human values in markets.
A Civil Economy is oriented to interdiciplinary studies of the economy, assisting scholars in diverse fields, such as business management, sociology, political science, and economics, in developing a common language to examine civic problems in the marketplace.
As an undergraduate text, it evokes a mode of thought about the development of a self-accountable system of markets. Students learn to understand how the market economy becomes socially accountable and self-reliant, while remaining productive, competitive, and profitable.
Sveryn T. Bruyn is Professor of Sociology, Boston College.
In this rich and thought-provoking work, Jürgen Kocka focuses his analytic lens on Germany’s long twentieth century, from the empire to the present. He begins by establishing the semantic problematic in the German term Bürgertum and presenting an analytical survey of German civil society over the past 120 years. He then offers a fascinating social history of the GDR, along with a comparative analysis of the East German dictatorship and that of the Third Reich. He further compares Germany’s “two dictatorships” in regard to historical memory, post-regime justice, and historiography before and after reunification. Kocka concludes with a wonderfully expansive view of historical interpretation and even argues for the place of trendiness and fashion in the profession.
The essays in this important new collection explore the diverse, unexpected, and controversial ways in which the idea of civil society has recently entered into populist politics and public debate throughout Africa.
In a substantial introduction, anthropologists Jean and John Comaroff offer a critical theoretical analysis of the nature and deployment of the concept—and the current debates surrounding it. Building on this framework, the contributors investigate the "problem" of civil society across their regions of expertise, which cover the continent. Drawing creatively on one another's work, they examine the impact of colonial ideology, postcoloniality, and development practice on discourses of civility, the workings of everyday politics, the construction of new modes of selfhood, and the pursuit of moral community.
Incisive and original, the book shows how struggles over civil society in Africa reveal much about larger historical forces in the post-Cold War era. It also makes a strong case for the contribution of historical anthropology to contemporary discourses on the rise of a "new world order."
Among the greatest challenges facing humanity in the twenty-first century is that of sustaining a healthy civil society, which depends upon managing the tension between individual and collective interests. Bruce R. Sievers explores this issue by investigating ways to balance the public and private sides of modern life in a manner that allows realization of the ideal of individual freedom and, at the same time, makes possible the effective pursuit of the common good. He traces the development of civil society from the seventeenth-century Dutch Republic and the eighteenth-century Scottish Enlightenment, analyzes its legacy for modern political life, and explores how historical trends in the formation of civil society and philanthropy aid or impede our achievement of public goods in the modern era.
National governments are proving ill-equipped to manage an increasingly complicated suite of global problems, from infectious diseases to climate change to conflicts over international trade. In The Coming Democracy, leading political analyst Ann Florini sets forth a compelling new paradigm for transnational governance, one based on the concept of "transparency"-- the idea that the free flow of information (on topics ranging from corporate and government behavior to nuclear proliferation to biodiversity protection) provides powerful ways to hold decision makers accountable and to give ordinary people meaningful voice in shaping the policies that affect them. Dramatic breakthroughs in information technology of the past decade have made such transparency possible on a global scale.Florini offers a clear and comprehensive assessment of the possibilities for using transparency to develop effective approaches to transnational governance. She shows how this new form of governance promises real hope for managing global problems, and provides a compelling scenario that demonstrates how existing conventions and institutions can lead the way in the evolution of a better system of global governance.
Most people understand property as something that is owned, a means of creating individual wealth. But in Commodity and Propriety, the first full-length history of the meaning of property, Gregory Alexander uncovers in American legal writing a competing vision of property that has existed alongside the traditional conception. Property, Alexander argues, has also been understood as proprietary, a mechanism for creating and maintaining a properly ordered society. This view of property has even operated in periods—such as the second half of the nineteenth century—when market forces seemed to dominate social and legal relationships.
In demonstrating how the understanding of property as a private basis for the public good has competed with the better-known market-oriented conception, Alexander radically rewrites the history of property, with significant implications for current political debates and recent Supreme Court decisions.
Control and Order in French Colonial Louisbourg, 1713-1758 is the culmination of nearly a quarter century of research and writing on 18th-century Louisbourg by A. J. B. Johnston. The author uses a multitude of primary archival sources-official correspondence, court records, parish registries, military records, and hundreds of maps and plans-to put together a detailed analysis of a distinctive colonial society. Located on Cape Breton Island (then known as Île Royale), the seaport and stronghold of Louisbourg emerged as one of the most populous and important settlements in all of New France. Its economy was based on fishing and trade, and the society that developed there had little or nothing to do with the fur trade, or the seigneurial regime that characterized the Canadian interior. Johnston traces the evolution of a broad range of controlling measures that were introduced and adapted to achieve an ordered civil and military society at Louisbourg. Town planning, public celebrations, diversity in the population, use of punishments, excessive alcohol consumption, the criminal justice system, and sexual abuse are some of the windows that reveal attempts to control and regulate society. A. J. B. Johnston's Control and Order in French Colonial Louisbourg offers both a broad overview of the colony's evolution across its half-century of existence, and insightful analyses of the ways in which control was integrated into the mechanisms of everyday life.
Creating a Nation of Joiners
Johann N NEEM Harvard University Press, 2008 Library of Congress JK3189.N44 2008 | Dewey Decimal 306.20974409033
Ever since Alexis de Tocqueville published his observations in Democracy in America, Americans have recognized the distinctiveness of their voluntary tradition. In a work of political, legal, social, and intellectual history, Neem traces the origins of this venerable tradition to the vexed beginnings of American democracy in Massachusetts.
When Cuba’s centralized system for providing basic social services began to erode in the early 1990s, Christian and Afro-Cuban religious groups took on new social and political responsibilities. They began to work openly with state institutions on projects such as the promotion of Afro-Cuban heritage to encourage tourism, and community welfare initiatives to confront drug use, prostitution, and housing decay. In this rich ethnography, the anthropologist Adrian H. Hearn provides a detailed, on-the-ground analysis of how the Cuban state and local religious groups collaborate on community development projects and work with the many foreign development agencies operating in Cuba. Hearn argues that the growing number of collaborations between state and non-state actors has begun to consolidate the foundations of a civil society in Cuba.
While conducting research, Hearn lived for one year each in two Santería temple-houses: one located in Old Havana and the other in Santiago de Cuba. During those stays he conducted numerous interviews: with the historian of Havana and the conservationist of Santiago de Cuba (officials roughly equivalent to mayors in the United States), acclaimed writers, influential leaders of Afro-Cuban religions, and many citizens involved in community development initiatives. Hearn draws on those interviews, his participant observation in the temple-houses, case studies, and archival research to convey the daily life experiences and motivations of religious practitioners, development workers, and politicians. Using the concept of social capital, he explains the state’s desire to incorporate tightly knit religious groups into its community development projects, and he illuminates a fundamental challenge facing Cuba’s religious communities: how to maintain their spiritual integrity and internal solidarity while participating in state-directed projects.
The Decent Society
Avishai Margalit Harvard University Press, 1996 Library of Congress JC336.M35 1996 | Dewey Decimal 320.011
How to be decent, how to build a decent society, emerges out of Margalit's analysis of the corrosive functioning of humiliation in its many forms. This is a deeply felt book that springs from Margalit's experience at the borderlands of conflicts between Eastern Europeans and Westerners, between Palestinians and Israelis.
Defending the Environment provides the means for nongovernmental organizations, community groups, and individuals to bring environmental and public health problems to the attention of international courts, tribunals, and commissions, or to their domestic counterparts. It suggests specific strategies and provides detailed information for taking action. This revised and updated edition also contains new case studies of the application of those strategies that has occurred in recent years.
Each chapter provides a description of the institutional mechanisms that can potentially receive, review, and remedy the alleged violation, along with a set of guidelines that explain how the reader can employ a particular strategy, and an example that indicates the effectiveness of a given strategy. In addition, the book offers an appendix that lists individuals and organizations who can assist with the various strategies described.
Defending the Environment represents the first concise, comprehensive guide to international environmental law and institutions that offers readers hands-on strategies for addressing environmental and public health problems.
As a minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, an army chaplain, a college professor, and a prolific writer, Theophilus Gould Steward was one of America’s leading black intellectuals during the half-century following Emancipation. He was not only a theologian
deeply committed to challenging his church’s outlook, he also epitomized postbellum efforts to create an African American civil society through religious, educational, and social institutions integral to citizenship.
Steward actively constructed a theological discourse that challenged both black and white religious and secular institutions, yet his tenacious pursuit of high standards often led him into conflict with the very community he served. A. G. Miller takes a new look at this
key figure in African American history to establish Steward’s place among the most influential thinkers and activists of the late nineteenth century. Augmenting what is already known about Steward’s life with a thoughtful combination of intellectual and social history,
Miller presents Steward’s ideas within the context of the social, political, economic, and religious trends of his day.
Miller examines Steward’s accomplishments and writings—including his unpublished manuscripts and his overlooked Victorian novel—to assess the ideas that he left to posterity and to consider how they shaped his times. The book devotes individual chapters to the
key themes that dominated Steward’s life: African American education, reconciling theology with modern science, the intersection of rational theology and moral virtues, the contradictions of race, the role of women in African American civil society, and Steward’s views on the military and imperialism.
With great insight and clarity, Miller discloses in a new and original way the rich life and thought of this extraordinary man. His study is both a groundbreaking analysis of Steward’s legacy and an important contribution to the history of American religious thought.
The Author: A. G. Miller is assistant professor of religion and Nord Faculty Fellow at Oberlin College and an ordained minister in the Pentecostal Church.
Reports of scandal and corruption have led to the downfall of numerous political leaders in Latin America in recent years. What conditions have developed that allow for the exposure of wrongdoing and the accountability of leaders? Enforcing the Rule of Law examines how elected officials in Latin American democracies have come under scrutiny from new forms of political control, and how these social accountability mechanisms have been successful in counteracting corruption and the limitations of established institutions.
This volume reveals how legal claims, media interventions, civic organizations, citizen committees, electoral observation panels, and other watchdog groups have become effective tools for monitoring political authorities. Their actions have been instrumental in exposing government crime, bringing new issues to the public agenda, and influencing or even reversing policy decisions.
Enforcing the Rule of Law presents compelling accounts of the emergence of civic action movements and their increasing political influence in Latin America, and sheds new light on the state of democracy in the region.
Using a rich array of newly available sources and contemporary methodologies from many disciplines, the ten original essays in this volume give a fresh appraisal of Addams as a theorist and practitioner of democracy. In an increasingly interdependent world, Addams's life work offers resources for activists, scholars, policy makers, and theorists alike. This volume demonstrates how scholars continue to interpret Addams as a model for transcending disciplinary boundaries, generating theory out of concrete experience, and keeping theory and practice in close and fruitful dialogue.
Contributors are Harriet Hyman Alonso, Victoria Bissell Brown, Wendy Chmielewski, Marilyn Fischer, Shannon Jackson, Louise W. Knight, Carol Nackenoff, Karen Pastorello, Wendy Sarvasay, Charlene Haddock Seigfried, and Camilla Stivers.
Women have experienced decades of economic and political repression across Latin America, where many nations are built upon patriarchal systems of power. However, a recent confluence of political, economic, and historical factors has allowed for the emergence of civil society organizations (CSOs) that afford women a voice throughout the region.
Leadership from the Margins describes and analyzes the unique leadership styles and challenges facing the women leaders of CSOs in Argentina, Chile, and El Salvador. Based on ethnographic research, Serena Cosgrove's analysis offers a nuanced account of the distinct struggles facing women, and how differences of class, political ideology, and ethnicity have informed their outlook and organizing strategies. Using a gendered lens, she reveals the power and potential of women's leadership to impact the direction of local, regional, and global development agendas.
In Liberalism at Its Limits, Ileana Rodríguez considers several Latin American nations that govern under the name of liberalism yet display a shocking range of nondemocratic features. In her political, cultural, and philosophical analysis, she examines these environments in which liberalism seems to have reached its limits, as the universalizing project gives way to rampant nonstate violence, gross inequality, and neocolonialism.
Focusing on Guatemala, Colombia, and Mexico, Rodríguez shows how standard liberal models fail to account for new forms of violence and exploitation, which in fact follow from specific clashes between liberal ideology and local practice. Looking at these tensions within the ostensibly well-ordered state, Rodríguez exposes how the misunderstanding and misuse of liberal principles are behind realities of political turmoil, and questions whether liberalism is in fact an ideology sufficient to empower populations and transition nation-states into democratic roles in the global order.
In this way, Liberalism at Its Limits offers a critical examination of the forced fitting of liberal models to Latin American nations and reasserts cross-cultural communication as crucial to grasping the true link between varying systems of value and politics.
In Guinea-Bissau, as elsewhere in Africa, there is a disjuncture between the central state and rural civil society. It is this significant and overlooked aspect of Guinea-Bissau’s political evolution—the continuing ability of civil society to evade and thwart state power—that is at the heart of Joshua B. Forrest’s Lineages of State Fragility.
Professor Forrest argues that despite European influences, the contemporary fragility of African states can be fully appreciated only by examining the indigenous social context in which these states evolved. Focusing on Guinea-Bissau, Forrest exposes the emergence of a strong and adaptable “rural civil society” that can be traced back to precolonial times.
Lineages of State Fragility analyzes the social, political, and military experiences of this rural civil society to account for the origins of Guinea-Bissau’s soft state. For example, Forrest identifies interethnic social and military practices that became entrenched in rural social structures and continued to evolve through the colonial period, enabling Guinea-Bissauans to resist state predation.
Lineages of State Fragility offers an unorthodox explanation of African politics by tracing the direct social links among the precolonial, colonial, and postcolonial periods and affirms the role of rural actors in determining present-day political outcomes.
Based on remarkably extensive research conducted in archives in Guinea-Bissau, Senegal, and Portugal, Lineages of State Fragility represents both a new approach to the region’s past and present and an important synthesis of the political analysis that has come before.
Differences between human beings have long been used to justify a range of degrading, exclusionary, and murderous practices that strip people of their humanity and dignity. While considerable scholarship has been devoted to such dehumanization, Matthew S. Weinert asks how we might conceive its reverse—humanization, or what it means to “make human.”
Weinert proposes an account of making human centered on five mechanisms: reflection, recognition, resistance, replication of dominant mores, and responsibility. Examining cases such as the UN Security Council’s engagements with crises and the International Court of Justice’s grappling with Kosovo’s unilateral declaration of independence, he illustrates the distinct and contingent ways these mechanisms have been deployed. Theoretically, the cases evince a complex, evolving relationship between state-centric and human-centric views of society, ultimately revealing the normative potentialities of both.
Though the case studies concern specific human relations issues on an international level, Weinert argues in favor of starting from the shared problem of being human and of living in a world in which the humanity of countless groups has been demeaned or denied. Working outward from that point, he proposes, we obtain a more pragmatically grounded understanding of the social construction of the human being.
Even in the midst of an economic boom, most Americans would agree that our civic institutions are hard pressed and that we are growing ever more cynical and disconnected from one another.
In response to this bleak assessment, advocates of "civil society" argue that rejuvenating our neighborhoods, churches, and community associations will lead to a more moral, civic-minded polity. Christopher Beem argues that while the movement's goals are laudable, simply restoring local institutions will not solve the problem; a civil society also needs politics and government to provide a sense of shared values and ideas. Tracing the concept back to Tocqueville and Hegel, Beem shows that both thinkers faced similar problems and both rejected civil society as the sole solution. He then shows how, in the case of the Civil Rights movement, both political groups and the federal government were necessary to effect a new consensus on race.
Taking up the arguments of Robert Putnam, Michael Sandel, and others, this timely book calls for a more developed sense of what the state is for and what our politics ought to be about.
"This book is bound to incite controversy and to contribute to our ongoing grappling with where our own democratic political culture is going. . . . Beem helps us to get things right by offering a corrective to any and all visions of civil society sanitized from politics."—Jean Bethke Elshtain, from the Foreword
"[Beem] makes an impressive case. At the end of the day, there really is no substitute for governmental authority in fostering the moral identity of the body politic."—Robert P. George, Times Literary Supplement
Individuals who are civically active have three things in common: they have the capacity to do so, they want to, and they have been asked to participate. New Advances in the Study of Civic Voluntarism is dedicated to examining the continued influence of these factors—resources, engagement, and recruitment—on civic participation in the twenty-first century.
The contributors to this volume examine recent social, political, technological, and intellectual changes to provide the newest research in the field. Topics range from race and religion to youth in the digital age, to illustrate the continued importance of understanding the role of the everyday citizen in a democratic society.
Contributors include:Molly Andolina, Allison P. Anoll, Leticia Bode, Henry E. Brady, Traci Burch, Barry C. Burden, Andrea Louise Campbell, David E. Campbell, Sara Chatfield, Stephanie Edgerly, Zoltán Fazekas, Lisa García Bedoll, Peter K. Hatemi, John Henderson, Krista Jenkins, Yanna Krupnikov, Adam Seth Levine, Melissa R. Michelson, S. Karthick Ramakrishnan, Dinorah Sánchez Loza, Kay Lehman Schlozman, Dhavan Shah, Sono Shah, Kjerstin Thorson, Sidney Verba, Logan Vidal, Emily Vraga, Chris Wells, JungHwan Yang, and the editor.
NOBILITY AND CIVILITY
William Theodore De Bary Harvard University Press, 2004 Library of Congress JQ36.D43 2004 | Dewey Decimal 303.34095
James E. Fleming Harvard University Press, 2012 Library of Congress KF4749.F55 2012 | Dewey Decimal 320.011
Fleming and McClain defend a civic liberalism that takes seriously not just rights but responsibilities and virtues. Issues taken up include same-sex marriage, reproductive freedom, regulation of civil society and the family, education of children, and clashes between First Amendment freedoms of association and religion and antidiscrimination law.
Modern developed nations are rich and politically stable in part because their citizens are free to form organizations and have access to the relevant legal resources. Yet in spite of the advantages of open access to civil organizations, it is estimated that eighty percent of people live in countries that do not allow unfettered access. Why have some countries disallow the formation of organizations as part of their economic and political system?
The contributions to Organizations, Civil Society, and the Roots of Development seek to answer this question through an exploration of how developing nations throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, including the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Germany, made the transition to allowing their citizens the right to form organizations. The transition, contributors show, was not an easy one. Neither political changes brought about by revolution nor subsequent economic growth led directly to open access. In fact, initial patterns of change were in the opposite direction, as political coalitions restricted access to specific organizations for the purpose of maintaining political control. Ultimately, however, it became clear that these restrictions threatened the foundation of social and political order. Tracing the path of these modern civil societies, Organizations, Civil Society, and the Roots of Development is an invaluable contribution to all interested in today’s developing countries and the challenges they face in developing this organizational capacity.
Modern psychological and political theory meet head-on in this powerful re-evaluation of America's contradictory and sometimes dangerous addiction to individualism. Best-selling author Gaylin and co-author Jennings investigate the contentious intersections of interdependence and autonomy, rights and public responsibility. They examine the painful abrasion occurring between America's tradition of personal freedom and privacy, as it rubs against the still valuable if almost vanishing ideals of sacrifice and social order.
Our current culture of autonomy—championed by both liberals on the left and libertarians on the right—is based on the idea of rationality as the motivation for human conduct. But, as the authors remind us, people are not simply rational creatures—appeals to emotions are always far more effective than logical argument in changing our behavior.
This timely edition includes a new preface; updated examples and illustrations throughout; and new coverage of contemporary social critics and their work since the publication of the first edition. Two essential new chapters, one on the movement to forgo life-sustaining treatment and the other on physician-assisted suicide, particularly clarify the authors' arguments. Drawing on these and numerous other illustrations—with significant emphasis on the state of American health care—Gaylin and Jennings demonstrate that society has not just the right but the duty to occasionally invoke fear, shame, and guilt in order to motivate humane behavior.
As cases of AIDS are once again on the upswing, as the dangerously mentally ill are allowed to wander free and untreated, as starvation and poverty still hold too many in its grip in the richest nation on the planet, this controversial book, considerably revised and expanded, is needed more than ever. If we are to indeed preserve and nurture a genuinely free—and liberal—society, the authors suggest that these "coercions" may be essential for the health and the maturity of a nation where we all too often avert our eyes, not seeing that our neighbor is in pain or trouble and needs our help.
Exhorting people to volunteer is part of the everyday vocabulary of American politics. Routinely, members of both major parties call for partnerships between government and nonprofit organizations. These entreaties increase dramatically during times of crisis, and the voluntary efforts of ordinary citizens are now seen as a necessary supplement to government intervention.
But despite the ubiquity of the idea of volunteerism in public policy debates, analysis of its role in American governance has been fragmented. Bringing together a diverse set of disciplinary approaches, Politics and Partnerships is a thorough examination of the place of voluntary associations in political history and an astute investigation into contemporary experiments in reshaping that role. The essays here reveal the key role nonprofits have played in the evolution of both the workplace and welfare and illuminate the way that government’s retreat from welfare has radically altered the relationship between nonprofits and corporations.
What role did civil society play in Korea's recent democratization? How does the Korean case compare with cases from other regions of the world? What is the current status of Korean democratic consolidation? What are the prospects for Korean democracy?
In December 1997, for the first time in the history of South Korea (hereafter Korea), an opposition candidate was elected to the presidency. Korea became the first new democracy in Asia where a horizontal transfer of power occurred through the electoral process. Sunhyuk Kim's study of democratization in Korea argues that the momentum for political change in Korea has consistently emanated from oppositional civil society rather than from the state. He develops a civil society paradigm and utilizes Korea’s three authoritarian breakdowns (only two of which resulted in democratic transitions) to illustrate the past and present influences of Korean civil society groups on authoritarian breakdowns, democratic transitions, and post-transition democratic consolidations.
One of the first systematic attempts to apply a civil society framework to a democratizing country in East Asia, The Politics of Democratization in Korea will be of use to political scientists and advanced undergraduate and graduate students working in comparative politics, political theory, East Asian politics, and the politics of democratization.
In the early 2000s, mainstream international news outlets celebrated the growth of Weblogistan—the online and real-life transnational network of Iranian bloggers—and depicted it as a liberatory site that gave voice to Iranians. As Sima Shakhsari argues in Politics of Rightful Killing, the common assumptions of Weblogistan as a site of civil society consensus and resistance to state oppression belie its deep internal conflicts. While Weblogistan was an effective venue for some Iranians to “practice democracy,” it served as a valuable site for the United States to surveil bloggers and express anti-Iranian sentiment and policies. At the same time, bloggers used the network to self-police and enforce gender and sexuality norms based on Western liberal values in ways that unwittingly undermined Weblogistan's claims of democratic participation. In this way, Weblogistan became a site of cybergovernmentality, where biopolitical security regimes disciplined and regulated populations. Analyzing online and off-line ethnography, Shakhsari provides an account of digital citizenship that raises questions about the internet's relationship to political engagement, militarism, and democracy.
Poland is the only country in which popular protest and mass opposition, epitomized by the Solidarity movement, played a significant role in bringing down the communist regime. This book, the first comprehensive study of the politics of protest in postcommunist Central Europe, shows that organized protests not only continued under the new regime but also had a powerful impact on Poland's democratic consolidation.
Following the collapse of communism in 1989, the countries of Eastern Europe embarked on the gargantuan project of restructuring their social, political, economic, and cultural institutions. The social cost of these transformations was high, and citizens expressed their discontent in various ways. Protest actions became common events, particularly in Poland. In order to explain why protest in Poland was so intense and so particularized, Grzegorz Ekiert and Jan Kubik place the situation within a broad political, economic, and social context and test it against major theories of protest politics. They conclude that in transitional polities where conventional political institutions such as parties or interest groups are underdeveloped, organized collective protest becomes a legitimate and moderately effective strategy for conducting state-society dialogue. The authors offer an original and rich description of protest movements in Poland after the fall of communism as a basis for developing and testing their ideas. They highlight the organized and moderate character of the protests and argue that the protests were not intended to reverse the change of 1989 but to protest specific policies of the government.
This book contributes to the literature on democratic consolidation, on the institutionalization of state-society relationship, and on protest and social movements. It will be of interest to political scientists, sociologists, historians, and policy advisors.
Grzegorz Ekiert is Professor of Government, Harvard University. Jan Kubik is Associate Professor of Political Science, Rutgers University.
South Africa’s Suspended Revolution tells the story of South Africa’s democratic transition and the prospects for the country to develop a truly inclusive political system. Beginning with an account of the transition in the leadership of the African National Congress from Thabo Mbeki to Jacob Zuma, the book then broadens its lens to examine the relationship of South Africa’s political elite to its citizens. It also examines the evolution of economic and social policies through the democratic transition, as well as the development of a postapartheid business community and a foreign policy designed to re-engage South Africa with the world community.
Written by one of South Africa’s leading scholars and political commentators, the book combines historical and contemporary analysis with strategies for an alternative political agenda. Adam Habib connects the lessons of the South African experience with theories of democratic transition, social change, and conflict resolution. Political leaders, scholars, students, and activists will all find material here to deepen their understanding of the challenges and opportunities of contemporary South Africa.
Etiquette books insist that we never discuss politics during a meal. In Table Talk , Janet A. Flammang offers a polite rebuttal, presenting vivid firsthand accounts of people's lives at the table to show how mealtimes can teach us the conversational give-and-take foundational to democracy. Delving into the ground rules about listening, sharing, and respect that we obey when we break bread, Flammang shows how conversations and table activities represent occasions for developing our civil selves. If there are cultural differences over practices--who should speak, what behavior is acceptable, what topics are off limits, how to resolve conflict--our exposure to the making, enforcement, and breaking of these rules offers a daily dose of political awareness and growth. Political table talk provides a forum to practice the conversational skills upon which civil society depends. It also ignites the feelings of respect, trust, and empathy that undergird the idea of a common good that is fundamental to the democratic process.
"Don't talk to strangers" is the advice long given to children by parents of all classes and races. Today it has blossomed into a fundamental precept of civic education, reflecting interracial distrust, personal and political alienation, and a profound suspicion of others. In this powerful and eloquent essay, Danielle Allen, a 2002 MacArthur Fellow, takes this maxim back to Little Rock, rooting out the seeds of distrust to replace them with "a citizenship of political friendship."
Returning to the landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision of 1954 and to the famous photograph of Elizabeth Eckford, one of the Little Rock Nine, being cursed by fellow "citizen" Hazel Bryan, Allen argues that we have yet to complete the transition to political friendship that this moment offered. By combining brief readings of philosophers and political theorists with personal reflections on race politics in Chicago, Allen proposes strikingly practical techniques of citizenship. These tools of political friendship, Allen contends, can help us become more trustworthy to others and overcome the fossilized distrust among us.
Sacrifice is the key concept that bridges citizenship and trust, according to Allen. She uncovers the ordinary, daily sacrifices citizens make to keep democracy working—and offers methods for recognizing and reciprocating those sacrifices. Trenchant, incisive, and ultimately hopeful, Talking to Strangers is nothing less than a manifesto for a revitalized democratic citizenry.
This book explores the idea that table activities--the mealtime rituals of food preparation, serving, and dining--lay the foundation for a proper education on the value of civility, the importance of the common good, and what it means to be a good citizen. The arts of conversation and diplomatic speech are learned and practiced at tables, and a political history of food practices recasts thoughtfulness and generosity as virtues that enhance civil society and democracy. In our industrialized and profit-centered culture, however, foodwork is devalued and civility is eroding.
Looking at the field of American civility, Janet A. Flammang addresses the gendered responsibilities for foodwork's civilizing functions and argues that any formulation of "civil society" must consider food practices and the household. To allow space for practicing civility, generosity, and thoughtfulness through everyday foodwork, Americans must challenge the norms of unbridled consumerism, work-life balance, and domesticity and caregiving. Connecting political theory with the quotidian activities of the dinner table, Flammang discusses practical ideas from the "delicious revolution" and Slow Food movement to illustrate how civic activities are linked to foodwork, and she points to farmers' markets and gardens in communities, schools, and jails as sites for strengthening civil society and degendering foodwork.
Theorizing NGOs examines how the rise of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) has transformed the conditions of women's lives and of feminist organizing. Victoria Bernal and Inderpal Grewal suggest that we can understand the proliferation of NGOs through a focus on the NGO as a unified form despite the enormous variation and diversity contained within that form. Theorizing NGOs brings together cutting-edge feminist research on NGOs from various perspectives and disciplines. Contributors locate NGOs within local and transnational configurations of power, interrogate the relationships of nongovernmental organizations to states and to privatization, and map the complex, ambiguous, and ultimately unstable synergies between feminisms and NGOs. While some of the contributors draw on personal experience with NGOs, others employ regional or national perspectives. Spanning a broad range of issues with which NGOs are engaged, from microcredit and domestic violence to democratization, this groundbreaking collection shows that NGOs are, themselves, fields of gendered struggles over power, resources, and status.
Contributors. Sonia E. Alvarez, Victoria Bernal, LeeRay M. Costa, Inderpal Grewal, Laura Grünberg, Elissa Helms, Julie Hemment, Saida Hodžic, Lamia Karim, Sabine Lang, Lauren Leve, Kathleen O'Reilly, Aradhana Sharma
Toward a Civil Discourse examines how, in the current political climate, Americans find it difficult to discuss civic issues frankly and openly with one another. Because America is dominated by two powerful discourses--liberalism and Christian fundamentalism, each of which paints a very different picture of America and its citizens' responsibilities toward their country-there is little common ground, and hence Americans avoid disagreement for fear of giving offence.
Sharon Crowley considers the ancient art of rhetoric as a solution to the problems of repetition and condemnation that pervade American public discourse. Crowley recalls the historic rhetorical concept of stasis--where advocates in a debate agree upon the point on which they disagree, thereby recognizing their opponent as a person with a viable position or belief. Most contemporary arguments do not reach stasis, and without it, Crowley states, a nonviolent resolution cannot occur.
Toward a Civil Discourse investigates the cultural factors that lead to the formation of beliefs, and how beliefs can develop into densely articulated systems and political activism. Crowley asserts that rhetorical invention (which includes appeals to values and the passions) is superior in some cases to liberal argument (which often limits its appeals to empirical fact and reasoning) in mediating disagreements where participants are primarily motivated by a moral or passionate commitment to beliefs.
Sharon Crowley examines numerous current issues and opposing views, and discusses the consequences to society when, more often than not, argumentative exchange does not occur. She underscores the urgency of developing a civil discourse, and through a review of historic rhetoric and its modern application, provides a foundation for such a discourse-whose ultimate goal, in the tradition of the ancients, is democratic discussion of civic issues.
On the eve of World War I, Russia, not known as a nation of joiners, had thousands of voluntary associations. Joseph Bradley examines the crucial role of voluntary associations in the development of civil society in Russia from the late eighteenth to the early twentieth century.
The rise and decline of American civic life has provoked wide-ranging responses from all quarters of society. Unfortunately, many proposals for improving our communities rely on renewed governmental efforts without a similar recognition that the inflexibility and poor accountability of governments have often worsened society's ills. The Voluntary City investigates the history of large-scale, private provision of social services, the for-profit provision of urban infrastructure and community governance, and the growing privatization of residential life in the United States to argue that most decentralized, competitive markets can contribute greatly to community renewal.
Among the fascinating topics covered are: how mutual-aid societies in America, Great Britain, and Australia provided their members with medical care, unemployment insurance, sickness insurance, and other social services before the welfare state; how private law, known historically as the law merchant, is returning in the form of arbitration; and why the rise of neighborhood associations represents the most comprehensive privatization occurring in the United States today.
The volume concludes with an epilogue that places the discoveries of The Voluntary City within the theory of market and government failure and discusses the implications of these discoveries for theories about the private provision of public goods. A refreshing challenge to the position that insists government alone can improve community life, The Voluntary City will be of special interest to students of history, law, urban life, economics, and government.
David T. Beito is Associate Professor of History, University of Alabama. Peter Gordon is Professor in the School of Policy, Planning, and Development and Department of Economics, University of Southern California. Alexander Tabarrok is Vice President and Research Director, the Independent Institute.
Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) are ubiquitous in the Global South. Often international in origin, many attempt to assist local efforts to improve the lives of people often living in or near poverty. Yet their external origins often cloud their ability to impact health or quality of life, regardless of whether volunteers are local or foreign.
By focusing on one particular type of NGO—those organized to help prevent the spread and transmission of HIV in Kenya—Megan Hershey interrogates the ways these organizations achieve (or fail to achieve) their planned outcomes. Along the way, she examines the slippery slope that is often used to define “success” based on meeting donor-set goals versus locally identified needs. She also explores the complex network of bureaucratic requirements at both the national and local levels that affect the delicate relationships NGOs have with the state. Drawing on extensive, original quantitative and qualitative research, Whose Agency serves as a much-needed case study for understanding the strengths and shortcomings of participatory development and community engagement.