The National Civic Federation and the Making of a New Liberalism, 1900-1915 (Hardback)
  • The National Civic Federation and the Making of a New Liberalism, 1900-1915 (Hardback)
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The National Civic Federation and the Making of a New Liberalism, 1900-1915 (Hardback)

(author)
£67.00
Hardback 216 Pages / Published: 30/01/2002
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Founded in 1900, the National Civic Federation (NCF), a broad-based, nongovernmental social and policy reform organization, emerged throughout the Progressive Era as one of the nation's most powerful policy research and lobbying groups. Amidst the strong demand by rank-and-file Americans for economic and social reform, the NCF proposed that the government begin to assume a more prominent role in managing the nation's economy and providing for the needs of the country's weakest and most vulnerable citizens. The organization constructed broad-based coalitions of business leaders, labor leaders, social scientists, and politicians with diverse backgrounds to fashion model legislation and promote public policy aimed at meeting the demands created by modern capitalism. Cyphers' work challenges the longstanding assumption that organizations like the NCF existed simply to build a relationship between big business and the government for the sole benefit of big business. He argues that the NCF sought the preservation of the fundamental tenets of American liberalism and the redefinition of this liberalism for a modern polity whose life was shaped by industrial and commercial capitalism. It saw the individual states, rather than the federal government, as the ideal mechanism to promote uniform economic and social reform. Cyphers also charts the origins of civic cooperation and the creation of voluntary associations as alternatives to the statist remedies to modern economic and social problems that were championed by America's early 20th-century socialist movement.

Publisher: ABC-CLIO
ISBN: 9780275973278
Number of pages: 216
Weight: 483 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"Christopher J. Cyphers has written a useful study of the National Civic Federation (NCF), a reform organization active during the Progressive Era....this is a useful book in terms of providing information about some aspects of the NCF's activities."-The Journal of American History
?Christopher J. Cyphers has written a useful study of the National Civic Federation (NCF), a reform organization active during the Progressive Era....this is a useful book in terms of providing information about some aspects of the NCF's activities.?-The Journal of American History
.,."an important revisionist study of an oft-misunderstood institution. Well-researched, clearly written, and firmly grounded in recent scholarship on American political development and the state, it persuasively demonstrates that the NCF-the most important elite-led reform organization to have been founded during the progressive era-was no mere lapdog of big business... . Cypher's study will be of interest to historians of the progressive era, as well as to business historians, political scientists, and students of American public policy."-Richard R. John Associate Professor of History University of Illinois at Chicago
"Chris Cyphers offers an insightful interpretation of the progressive era. Providing a fresh interpretation of this seminal period, Cyphers demonstrates how the National Civic Federation attempted to protect the nineteenth century liberal tradition of individual autonomy and personal independence through the creation of a modern administrative state....Through extensive archival research and an astute analysis that blends institutional and intellectual history, Cypher's interpretation of the National Civic Federation will be of great interest to historians and political scientists."-Julian Zelizer Associate Professor of History and Public Policy State University of New York at Albany
"To read Chris Cypher's penetrating account of the National Civic Federation is to be reminded again of what history can reveal about our own times. Like the Americans of that era, we have just entered a new century and a new industrial era; and like them, we too are debating the meaning of liberalism, the responsibilities of the individual and the state, the integration of new immigrations, and the role of corporations in a liberal democracy-in short, the shape of an emerging political economy. For those who wish to understand the origins of what was called the American Century-and the questions that remain unresolved a hundred years on-this book is indispensable."-Joe Conason Political Columnist The New York Observer

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