Democratic Humility: Reinhold Niebuhr, Neuroscience, and America's Political Crisis (Hardback)
  • Democratic Humility: Reinhold Niebuhr, Neuroscience, and America's Political Crisis (Hardback)
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Democratic Humility: Reinhold Niebuhr, Neuroscience, and America's Political Crisis (Hardback)

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£60.00
Hardback 192 Pages / Published: 09/06/2015
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American politics is in a state of crisis but it is not clear why. Nor do we know what to do about it. Reinhold Niebuhr helps us understand what is wrong with our politics and research into the workings of the brain confirms his analysis. Call it sin or motivated reasoning and confirmation bias, the bottom line is that all of us are what Niebuhr calls "Children of Light." We are all vain and self-righteous about our beliefs and values, and far too quick to reject any information that goes against them. The unprecedented rise of talk radio and cable news helps to account for why things are so bad. We all want to hear that our group is smarter and more moral than others. To restore a democracy that functions, we need to understand ourselves better and develop the humility that such knowledge should engender.

Publisher: Lexington Books
ISBN: 9781498511421
Number of pages: 192
Weight: 413 g
Dimensions: 235 x 161 x 19 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
This learned, engagingly written, and passionate book combines the wise theology of Reinhold Niebhur, recent cognitive science, and evidence about the debased state of American politics to advance a persuasive argument for learning humility. Anyone who wants to improve our democracy should read it. - Peter Levine, Lincoln Filene Professor, Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service, Tufts University -- Peter Levine, Tufts University
Anyone concerned about the acrimonious state of our public life will benefit from reading Christopher Beem's lively and imaginative study, which draws on the work of theologian Reinhold Niebuhr to explain how we got into the current fix, and what we will need to do get out of it. He makes a strong case for a revitalized form of civic education, one designed not merely to teach the facts about American citizenship, but to model and reinforce the virtues of democratic humility in young Americans. Required reading. -- Wilfred M. McClay, University of Oklahoma

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