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Tag Archives: Tocqueville

Tocqueville’s Democratic Historians

Share the post "Tocqueville’s Democratic Historians" We’ve decided to experiment with a new feature on the blog called “close-reading Tocqueville.” The premise is simple: we’ll periodically select one chapter from Tocqueville’s corpus and comment on what we find. To begin, I chose Tocqueville’s chapter, “On Certain Tendencies Peculiar to Historians in Democratic Centuries” (Democracy in America, II.1.20). The chapter follows a series of reflections on genre, in which...

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Revue de Presse: August 11

Share the post "Revue de Presse: August 11" Welcome to Tocqueville 21’s weekly revue de presse, where we recap some of the most thought-provoking articles we’ve seen on democracy and politics in France, the US, and beyond. As always, the articles we relay here do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors and interns that put this list together, just what we think is worth reading. Americans have been seeing the fall of Rome as a mirror for their own anxieties...

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Illuminer les ombres – An interview with Dick Howard

Share the post "Illuminer les ombres – An interview with Dick Howard" Danielle Charette and Matthew Jackson interviewed Dick Howard about his career on the New Left and his latest book, Les Ombres de l’Amérique: De Kennedy à Trump (Éditions François Bourin, 2018). Howard taught philosophy and political theory at Stony Brook University for many years and is the author of fifteen books, four originally written in French. He has also published political commentaries for...

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America’s Orwellian Left

Share the post "America’s Orwellian Left" John Michael Colón’s excellent essay on democratic socialism and the contemporary American left centers around George Orwell’s Animal Farm. As Colón writes, the book is mainly known as a warning against revolutionary politics in general, a tale of “supposed revolutionaries” who “produced a dictatorship perhaps only distinguished from the old one by being even worse.” One of the piece’s main arguments is that “the failure of...

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On Judith Shklar, snobbery, and the SAT

Share the post "On Judith Shklar, snobbery, and the SAT" The SAT was back in the news last week, thanks to the College Board’s introduction of something called an “adversity score.” Admissions officers will now see a number, between 1 and 100, quantifying various socioeconomic factors associated with an applicant’s hometown and upbringing. Although the number will not affect students’ official SAT scores, the “environmental context dashboard” that accompanies their...

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Reading Tocqueville, Translating Tocqueville

Share the post "Reading Tocqueville, Translating Tocqueville" Below is the video from Art’s talk at the University of Chicago last week, entitled “Reading Tocqueville, Translating Tocqueville.” Art was joined by Jim Sparrow, Manon Garcia, Jennifer Pitts, Eric Slaughter, and Nina Valiquette Moreau. Thanks to Mariam Elmalh and Felix Chaoulideer for their help in preparing this video.

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Two Events in Chicago!

Share the post "Two Events in Chicago!" Our very own Art Goldhammer will be giving two talks at the University of Chicago next week, which any Tocqueville 21 readers in the area will not want to miss. The first will be a presentation on April 15 entitled “Reading Tocqueville, Translating Tocqueville.” Join Art for a discussion of his approach to translating Tocqueville’s Democracy in America, in conversation with Manon Garcia, Jennifer Pitts, Eric Slaughter, Nina...

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Computer programmers and Quentin Compson: American Stoics?

Share the post "Computer programmers and Quentin Compson: American Stoics?" The New York Times recently ran an entertaining—if somewhat unnerving—piece on Silicon Valley’s fascination with Stoicism. A number of prominent tech entrepreneurs claim to follow the philosophy of self-mastery taught by Cicero, Seneca, and Marcus Aurelius—or at least the version of Roman thought popularized by writers like William Irvine and Ryan Holiday. The Daily Stoic blog markets momento...

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Liberalism’s Forgotten Global History

Share the post "Liberalism’s Forgotten Global History" Chinese philosopher Hu Shih (top left) with John Dewey (bottom right) in Shanghai, 1919. Ewa Atanassow teaches political theory at Bard College Berlin. Her latest book, co-edited with Tocqueville Review Editorial Board member Alan Kahan, is Liberal Moments: Reading Liberal Texts (Bloomsbury, 2018). Ewa recently sat down with David Kretz to discuss the book’s project of assembling liberal voices from around the...

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Isolation and Association: The Penitentiary System’s Democratic Lessons

Share the post "Isolation and Association: The Penitentiary System’s Democratic Lessons" This is the second article in Tocqueville 21’s series on prisons, police, and democracy. When Alexis de Tocqueville and Gustave Beaumont arrived in America in 1831, they did so on a pretext. They were interested in leaving Louis Philippe’s France to observe Jackson’s America, but needed a reason for their travels—as Tocqueville wrote to Charles Stoffels in 1830—both to authorize...

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