Frederick G. Whelan, a leading scholar of Enlightenment political thought, provides an illuminating and incisive interpretation of key eighteenth and nineteenth century European political thinkers' accounts and assessments of the societies and political institutes of the non-Western world. These writers opened up a major new comparative dimension for political theory and its project both to explain and evaluate different political regimes. While the intellectual confrontation of European thinkers with alien cultures tended on the whole to confirm Westerners' sense of the superiority of their own institutions, it was also characterized – during the Enlightenment more so than later – by convictions regarding a common humanity and a corresponding sympathetic curiosity about different ways of life, however primitive or exotic they might appear. This book will be of interest to students and scholars of both political philosophy and thought as well as historians of this important period of history.
Intended for scholars in the fields of political theory, and the history of political thought, this two-volume examines David Hume's Political Thought (1711-1776) and that of his contemporaries, including Smith, Blackstone, Burke and Robertson. This book is unified by its temporal focus on the middle and later decades of the eighteenth century and hence on what is usually taken to be the core period of the Enlightenment, a somewhat problematic term. Covering topics such as property, contract and resistance theory, religious establishments, the law of nations, the balance of power, demography, and the role of unintended consequences in social life, Frederick G. Whelan convincingly conveys the diversity--and creativity--of the intellectual engagements of even a limited set of Enlightenment thinkers in contrast to dismissive attitudes, in some quarters, toward the Enlightenment and its supposed unitary project. Political Thought of Hume and his Contemporaries: Enlightenment Projects Vol. 1 contains six in-depth studies of issues in eighteenth-century political thought, with an emphasis on topics in normative theory such as property rights, the social contract, resistance to oppressive government, and religious liberty. The central figure is David Hume, with substantial attention to Edmund Burke, Adam Smith, and others in the period. The introduction situates the studies in the Enlightenment and considers interpretations of that movement.
Culture, Class, and Critical Theory develops a theory of culture that explains how ideas create and legitimate class inequalities in modern society. This theory is developed through a critique and comparison of the powerful ideas on culture offered by Pierre Bourdieu and the Frankfurt School thinkers, especially Theodor Adorno. These ideas are illuminated and criticized through the development of two empirical cases on which Gartman has published extensively, automobile design and architecture. Bourdieu and the Frankfurt School postulate opposite theories of the cultural legitimation of class inequalities. Bourdieu argues that the culture of modern society is a class culture, a ranked diversity of beliefs and tastes corresponding to different classes. The cultural beliefs and practices of the dominant class are arbitrarily defined as superior, thus legitimating its greater share of social resources. By contrast, the thinkers of the Frankfurt School conceive of modern culture as a mass culture, a leveled homogeneity in which the ideas and tastes shared by all classes disguises real class inequalities. This creates the illusion of an egalitarian democracy that prevents inequalities from being contested. Through an empirical assessment of the theories against the cases, Gartman reveals that both are correct, but for different parts of modern culture. These parts combine to provide a strong legitimation of class inequalities.
Eine leidenschaftliche Antithese zum üblichen Kulturpessimismus und ein engagierter Widerspruch zu dem weitverbreiteten Gefühl, dass die Moderne dem Untergang geweiht ist. Hass, Populismus und Unvernunft regieren die Welt, Wissenschaftsfeindlichkeit macht sich breit, Wahrheit gibt es nicht mehr: Wer die Schlagzeilen von heute liest, könnte so denken. Doch Bestseller-Autor Steven Pinker zeigt, dass das grundfalsch ist. Er hat die Entwicklung der vergangenen Jahrhunderte gründlich untersucht und beweist in seiner fulminanten Studie, dass unser Leben stetig viel besser geworden ist. Heute leben wir länger, gesünder, sicherer, glücklicher, friedlicher und wohlhabender denn je, und nicht nur in der westlichen Welt. Der Grund: die Aufklärung und ihr Wertesystem. Denn Aufklärung und Wissenschaft bieten nach wie vor die Basis, um mit Vernunft und im Konsens alle Probleme anzugehen. Anstelle von Gerüchten zählen Fakten, anstatt überlieferten Mythen zu glauben baut man auf Diskussion und Argumente. Anschaulich und brillant macht Pinker eines klar: Vernunft, Wissenschaft, Humanismus und Fortschritt sind weiterhin unverzichtbar für unser Wohlergehen. Ohne sie wird die Welt auf keinen Fall zu einem besseren Ort für uns alle. »Mein absolutes Lieblingsbuch aller Zeiten.« Bill Gates
Ali Mirsepassi's book presents a powerful challenge to the dominant media and scholarly construction of radical Islamist politics, and their anti-Western ideology, as a purely Islamic phenomenon derived from insular, traditional and monolithic religious 'foundations'. It argues that the discourse of political Islam has strong connections to important and disturbing currents in Western philosophy and modern Western intellectual trends. The work demonstrates this by establishing links between important contemporary Iranian intellectuals and the central influence of Martin Heidegger's philosophy. We are also introduced to new democratic narratives of modernity linked to diverse intellectual trends in the West and in non-Western societies, notably in India, where the ideas of John Dewey have influenced important democratic social movements. As the first book to make such connections, it promises to be an important contribution to the field and will do much to overturn some pervasive assumptions about the dichotomy between East and West.
This book tackles an obvious yet profound problem of modern political life: the disorientation of intellectuals and activists on the left. As the study of political history and theory has been usurped by cultural criticism, a confusion over the origins
The Enlightenment of the late 17th and 18th century is characterized by an emphasis on reason and empiricism . As a major shaping philosophy of Western culture, it had a historical impact on the religious, cultural, academic, and social institutions of 18th century Europe. In this compelling volume, the author explores the lasting impact of Enlightenment thinking on modern Western societies and other democracies. With an interdisciplinary, comparative-historical approach this volume explores the impact of Enlightenment ideals such as liberty, equality, and social justice on current social institutions. Combining sociological theory with concrete examples, the author provides a unique framework for understanding modern cultural development, including a picture of how it would look without this Enlightenment basis. This work provides a multi-faceted approach, including: an historical overview, analysis of the Enlightenment’s influence on modern democratic societies, modern culture, political science, civil society and the economy, as well as exploring the counter-Enlightenment, Post-Enlightenment, and Neo-Enlightenment philosophies.
Immanuel Kant verfasste seinen bahnbrechenden Essay 1784 für die »Berlinische Monatsschrift«. Mit dem berühmten ersten Satz »Aufklärung ist der Ausgang des Menschen aus seiner selbst verschuldeten Unmündigkeit« formulierte Kant dabei die bis heute gültige Definition der Aufklärung, mit der im eigentliche Sinne die Moderne begann. Neben dem Aufsatz enthält der Band die ebenfalls für die Aufklärung zentralen Texte »Idee zu einer allgemeinen Geschichte in weltbürgerlicher Absicht« und »Was heißt: Sich im Denken orientieren?«
Japan's national independence." "Moving back and forth between the ideas of Western thinkers and Fukuzawa's reinterpretations in terms of Japan's needs and cultural assumptions, Albert Craig provides a new analysis of the founding of modern Japan." --Book Jacket.
Postcolonialism and Political Theory explores the intersection between the political and the postcolonial through an engagement with, critique of, and challenge to some of the prevalent, restrictive tenets and frameworks of Western political and social thought. It is a response to the call by postcolonial studies, as well as to the urgent need within world politics, to turn towards a multiplicity--largely excluded from globally dominant discourses of community, subjectivity, power and prosperity--constituted by otherness, radical alterity, or subordination to the newly reconsolidated West. The book offers a diverse range of essays that re-examine and open the boundaries of political and cultural modernity's historical domain; that look at how the racialized and gendered and cultured subject visualizes the social from elsewhere; that critique the limits of postcolonial theory and its claim to celebrate diversity; and that complicate the notion of postcolonial politics within settler societies that continue to practice exile of the indigenous. Postcolonialism and Political Theory is an ideal book for graduate and advanced undergraduate level study and for those working both disciplinarily and interdisciplinarily, both inside and outside academia.
A comprehensive overview of the development of political thought during the European enlightenment.
An energetic, engaged and lucid account of the most important political thinkers and enduring themes of the last two and a half millenia. McClelland presents original and controversial views of both canonical and neglected theorists.
Iconoclastic and fiercely rational, the European Enlightenment witnessed the birth of modern Western society and thought. Reason was sacrosanct and for the first time, religious belief and institutions were open to widespread criticism. In this groundbreaking book, Ziad Elmarsafy challenges this accepted wisdom to argue that religion was still hugely influential in the era. But the religion in question wasn’t Christianity – it was Islam. Charting the history of Qur’anic translations in Europe during the 18th and early 19th Centuries, Elmarsafy shows that a number of key enlightenment figures – including Voltaire, Rousseau, Goethe, and Napoleon – drew both inspiration and ideas from the Qur’an. Controversially placing Islam at the heart of the European Enlightenment, this lucid and well argued work is a valuable window into the interaction of East and West during this pivotal epoch in human history. Ziad Elmarsafy is Senior Lecturer in the Department of English and Related Literature at the University of York, UK.
This provocative study argues that the 'believers' church' should draw on Catholic, Reformed, and Lutheran thought to find a solid basis for Christian political action. The book believes that a 'believers' church' ethic has points of continuity with the quest for social justice in the larger society. Rather than separating discipleship from political life or uncritically baptizing political projects, the believers' church may appeal to natural law as a basis for cooperation with others toward the end of a more just society. The volume draws upon various historical theologians and a variety of contemporary figures to affirm a God-given moral capacity in humans that makes a tolerably just political order possible.
Seit einem Jahrzehnt gibt es eine intensive Forschung zur »Radikalaufklärung« – dem atheistischen, skeptischen und materialistischen Flügel des Denkens im späten 17. und 18. Jahrhundert. Vor allem Jonathan Israel hat für die aufregende These argumentiert, dass diese radikalen Aufklärer verantwortlich sind für die Errungenschaften der Moderne, für Freiheit und Menschenrechte, Gleichheit und Toleranz, und dass der Spinozismus eine zentrale Rolle bei deren Durchsetzung gespielt hat. In diesem Band setzen sich acht führende nationale und internationale Experten mit Israels These auseinander und zeigen die Vielfalt und Deutungen der Radikalaufklärung auf. Mit Beiträgen von Silvia Berti, Wiep van Bunge, Margaret C. Jacob, Anthony McKenna u. a.
Civil Society is one of the most used--and abused--concepts in current political thinking. Fifteen leading scholars clarify the theoretical meanings of the concept as well as consider the different historical contexts in which it has been used outside the West. The volume is divided into two parts: the first section analyzes the meaning of civil society in different theoretical traditions of Western philosophy. In the second section, contributors consider the theoretical and practical contexts in which this idea has been invoked in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
In this major intellectual history, Ira Katznelson examines the works of Hannah Arendt, Robert Dahl, Richard Hofstadter, Harold Lasswell, Charles Lindblom, Karl Polanyi, and David Truman, detailing their engagement with the larger project of reclaiming the West's moral bearing.
What is the place of Eastern thought - Buddhism, Taoism, Hinduism, Confucianism - in the Western intellectual tradition? Oriental Enlightenment shows how, despite current talk of 'globalization', there is still a reluctance to accept that the West could have borrowed anything of significance from the East, and explores a critique of the 'orientalist' view that we must regard any study of the East through the lens of Western colonialism and domination. Oriental Enlightenment provides a lucid introduction to the fascination Eastern thought has exerted on Western minds since the Renaissance.
Now available in paperback, this two-volume work is intended to help readers develop powerful new ways of thinking about organizational principles, and apply them to policy-making and management in colleges and universities. The book is written with two audiences in mind: administrative and faculty leaders in institutions of higher learning, and students (both doctoral and Master's degree) studying to become upper-level administrators, leaders, and policy makers in higher education. It systematically presents a range of theories that can be applied to many of the difficult management situations that college and university leaders encounter. It provides them with the theoretical background to knowledgeably evaluate the many new ideas that emerge in the current literature, and in workshops and conferences. The purpose is to help leaders develop their own effective management style and approaches, and feel confident that their actions are informed by appropriate theory and knowledge of the latest research in the field. Without theory, organizational leaders are forced to treat each problem that they encounter as unique–as if it were a first-time occurrence. While leaders may have some experience with a particular issue, their solutions are usually not informed by the accumulated wisdom of others who have already encountered and resolved similar situations. The authors approach the theory of the organization and administration of colleges and universities from three quite different perspectives, or paradigms, each relying on different assumptions about the “reality” of organizational life in colleges and universities. The positivist paradigm–primarily an omnibus systems theory–integrates the chapters into a comprehensive, yet easily accessible whole. Social constructionism, the second paradigm, is introduced in each chapter to illuminate the difficulty of seeking and finding meaningful consensus on problems and policies, while also addressing important ethical issues that tend to be overlooked in leadership thought and action. The third paradigm, postmodernism, draws attention to difficulties of logic and communication under the constraints of strictly linear thinking that “authorities” at all levels attempt to impose on organizations. This “multiple paradigm” approach enables readers to become more cognizant of their own assumptions, how they may differ from those of others in their organization, and how those differences may both create difficulties in resolving problems and expand the range of alternatives considered in organizational decision making. The book offers readers the tools to balance the real-world needs to succeed in today’s challenging and competitive environment with the social and ethical aspirations of all its stakeholders and society at large. The authors’ aim is to elucidate how administration can be made more efficient and effective through rational decision-making while also respecting humanistic values. This approach highlights a range of phenomena that require attention if the institution is ultimately to be considered successful.

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