Can Europe survive after abandoning the national loyalties—and religious traditions—that provided meaning? And what will happen to the United States as it goes down a similar path? The eminent French political philosopher Pierre Manent addresses these questions in his brilliant meditation on Europe's experiment in maximizing individual and social rights. By seeking to escape from the “national form,” he shows, the European Union has weakened the very institutions that made possible liberty and self-government in the first place. Worse still, the “spiritual vacuity” that characterizes today's secular Europe—and, increasingly, the United States—is ultimately untenable.
Type: BOOK - Published: 2010-06-07 - Publisher: Cambridge University Press
The political institutions under which we live today evolved from a revolutionary idea that shook the world in the second part of the eighteenth century: that a people should govern itself. Yet if we judge contemporary democracies by the ideals of self-government, equality and liberty, we find that democracy is
Type: BOOK - Published: 2008-10-01 - Publisher: Yale University Press
Should we try to “live in the present”? Such is the imperative of modernity, Jed Rubenfeld writes in this important and original work of political theory. Since Jefferson proclaimed that “the earth belongs to the living”—since Freud announced that mental health requires people to “get free of their past”—since Nietzsche
Despite decades of talk about globalization, democracy still depends on local self-government. In Local Self-Government and the Right to the City, Warren Magnusson argues that it is the principle behind claims to personal autonomy, community control, and national self-determination, and holds the promise of more peaceful politics. Unfortunately, state-centred thinking
How did constitutionally limited government and democracy emerge in the West? Many scholars from many different perspectives have attempted to answer this question. I identify the emergence of these forms of self-government with early modern nationalism. Broadly speaking, nationalism of the right sort provides indispensable resources both for united popular