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Understanding the Best Book Ever Written About American Democracy

with Daniel J. Mahoney

This new edition of Liberty Law Talk is a conversation with Daniel J. Mahoney of Assumption College regarding Alexis de Tocqueville’s counsel in Democracy in America on how Americans can best combat an unbound egalitarianism and the prospect of soft-despotism. Tocqueville’s writings have been significantly featured over the past few years given his warnings and sense of the dangers of overly centralized government, so this conversation with a noted Tocqueville scholar will add greater depth to our understanding of what the author of the best book ever written about democracy can teach us regarding the challenges and opportunities that America now faces.

Related links:

Daniel Mahoney’s Welfare Rights as Socialist Manqué.

Aurelian Craiutu’s Redeeming Liberty: Tocqueville on the Omnipresent Threat of Democratic Pantheism.

Reader Discussion

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on August 30, 2012 at 15:57:33 pm

Well done, Dan. My question on, surprise, the Declaration in Tocqueville's thought, concerns his reaction to a Fourth of July celebration in New York.The celebration moved him, but the oration in praise of the Declaration, "seated at the center of the universe," disgusted him with what he called a pompous harangue (letter to Chabrol, July 16, 1831). While he does not recount the episode in _Democracy_, he does on occasion chide Americans for their irksome patriotism. Is that criticism not related to his omission of the Declaration?

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Ken Masugi

Law & Liberty welcomes civil and lively discussion of its articles. Abusive comments will not be tolerated. We reserve the right to delete comments - or ban users - without notification or explanation.