This collection of short essays on texts in the history of democracy shows the diversity of ideas that contributed to the making of our present democratic moment.
The selection of texts goes beyond the standard, Western-centric canonical history of democracy, with its beginnings in ancient Athens and its climax in the French and American revolutions, recovering some of the significant body of democratic and anti-democratic thought in Latin America, Asia, and elsewhere. It includes discussions of well-known philosophers like Plato and Aristotle, but also of a variety of thinkers much less well known in English as writers on democracy: Al Farabi, Bolivar, Gandhi, Radishchev, Lenin, Sun Yat-sen, and many others. The essays thus de-center our understanding of the moments where the idea of democracy was articulated, rejected, and appropriated.
Spanning antiquity to the present and global in scope, with contributions by key scholars of democracy from around the world, Democratic Moments is the ideal text for all students wishing to expand their understanding of the ways in which this contested concept has been understood.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Number of pages: 218
Weight: 485 g
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
This is an ambitious and exciting collection that begins to fill an enormous gap in political theory literature. Where much existing work in the field is content to present democracy - and "democratic moments"- as historically or paradigmatically Western, this volume breaks bold new ground in truly situating discussion of democracy across time and space. From this perspective there emerges a more creative, and certainly more accurate, picture of what democracy is, what it might be, and how it has been thought about in the course of human history - including not only work from the ancient Greeks and Romans but also hugely influential writers such as the Abbe Sieyes, Sun Yat-sen, and al-Farabi. * Leigh Jenco, Professor of Political Theory, London School of Economics, UK *
This collection of deeply challenging short essays brings together thinkers grappling with the challenges and promises of their own times and places, and invites us to try to learn from them as we ponder our own difficult moment. We encounter here analyses of democracy from classical antiquity, the modern West, medieval Baghdad, eighteenth-century Russia, colonial India, rebellious China, and more. * John Markoff, Distinguished University Professor of Sociology, History, and Political Science, University of Pittsburgh, USA *