Monthly Archives: June 2017

a century ago in Russia

Facebook6 Twitter0Total6June 30, 1917: The February Revolution is over, leaving two uneasily complementary governments in place: the Duma that had been assembled under the Czar, and the Petrograd Soviet, elected by workers, soldiers, and peasants. Amid the chaos, while any … Continue reading

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explore Tisch College

Facebook32 Twitter0Total32(Washington, DC) Yesterday’s launch of a very attractive new website for the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life provides a reason to explore what we offer at Tisch. We provide advanced civic education for students in all of Tufts … Continue reading

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so, you want to strengthen democracy?

Facebook15 Twitter0Total15This year’s Frontiers of Democracy conference explored a set of analytical tools that may be useful if you want to improve or defend democracy: You should decide where you stand on the current crisis in American democracy (which is mirrored in … Continue reading

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how to get a deliberative democracy

Facebook34 Twitter0Total34The annual Frontiers of Democracy conference ended on Saturday–and my thanks to the 150 dedicated and skillful participants. It’s billed as a gathering of people committed to various forms of democratic reform, but it tends to draw colleagues from … Continue reading

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Frontiers of Democracy starts today

Facebook45 Twitter0Total45About 140 thinkers and activists for democracy gather today at Frontiers of Democracy. If you’re not among us, you can watch the live-streams of the plenary sessions. The #DemFront hashtag is also being used already for substantive conversations. In past years, … Continue reading

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a sketch of a theory of social movements

Facebook16 Twitter0Total16Any social movement needs resources, such as money, existing organizations with members, physical spaces, tools for communication, people with special skills, allies within existing power structures, etc. These resources are somewhat flexible; for instance, you can do without money … Continue reading

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Hannah Arendt and Lin-Manuel Miranda

Facebook8 Twitter0Total8Hannah Arendt’s interpretation of the American Revolution may not be accurate history, but it is valuable political theory, and it finds an eloquent echo in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton. Arendt argues that the American revolutionaries began by seeking liberty, which … Continue reading

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CQ article on civic education

Facebook17 Twitter0Total17There’s always a steady trickle of articles about civic education, and I don’t post most of them, but I do recommend “Misinformed and Unschooled, Young People Are Failing in Civics” by Emily Watkins for CQ/Roll Call. Actually, the headline … Continue reading

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saving Habermas from the deliberative democrats

Facebook39 Twitter0Total39“God save me from the Marxists”–attributed to Karl Marx Jürgen Habermas is often presented as the master theorist of deliberative democracy, the author who believes that a society should approximate an “ideal speech situation” in which “the only force is … Continue reading

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does the UK election show a return to two-party rule?

Facebook3 Twitter0Total3A May 2016 article in the Financial Times was headlined, “British politics has broken out of the two-party system.” The lead explains: Politics has fragmented. London’s choice of Sadiq Khan as mayor grabbed the headlines — and rightly so. … Continue reading

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