Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America


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Condition: Very Good. Former Library book. Great condition for a used book! Minimal wear. Seller Inventory GRP More information about this seller Contact this seller. Condition: As New. Book in almost Brand New condition. Seller Inventory ZXZ2. Condition: Used: Good. No Jacket. Like new. Seller Inventory Having no privileged status to covet or defend eliminates the need to respond to petty irritants. Americans are slow to take serious offense - but once offense is taken, they tend to retain it.

People thus engaged have scarcely time to attend to the details of etiquette, and they are besides too strongly interested in living harmoniously for them to stick at such things. They therefore soon acquire a habit of considering the feelings and opinions of those whom they meet more than their manners, and they do not allow themselves to be annoyed by trifles. However, when traveling abroad, Americans are confounded by the infinite levels of class and privilege and often respond in notoriously inappropriate ways.

An early example of "the ugly American" abroad. Although individualistic, Americans are always willing to lend a hand to those in need.

All are willing individually to be of service in small ways that can amount to considerable help when joined by a large number of people. Americans are charitable. Americans are full of patriotism and pride in their nation - and verbally persistent in their expression of it. Their country, their freedom, their morality, their relatively uncorrupted governance, are all flaunted when in contact with foreign visitors.

Their democratic privileges and rights are newly won and still fragile and so are jealously guarded and proudly exhibited. There is enough economic mobility so that servants and masters are interchangeable, with servants striking out on their own as masters, and masters who do not prosper reduced to servants. Their status is not due to some permanent rank as in aristocracies, but to temporary contracts - and the status extends only so far as the contract. Masters and servants in the U. Indeed, there is enough economic mobility so that servants and masters are interchangeable, with servants striking out on their own as masters, and masters who do not prosper reduced to servants.

In the minds of both master and servant and the outside community, there is an "imaginary equality between them, in spite of the very real inequality of the conditions. Outside the realm of the major manufacturers, this relative independence and mobility of workmen has led observably to a slow increase in wages and circumstances.

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Tocqueville repeats his fear that it is different for the masses of workers who are dependent on industrial jobs. Nobody is obliged to do your bidding. Anything you want or want done you must pay for. All enjoy equality of conditions, and face the same risks and enjoy the same opportunities. Business and manufacturing are the widespread passions of the ambitious.

They immerse themselves in the daily grind of such activities - accepting the monotonous discipline required for success. However, this feature of economic development is observable in all nations seeking economic growth. Tocqueville succumbs to his own aristocratic prejudices with his mildly disdainful attitude towards economic ambitions.

As soon as a son reaches the point where he can achieve his economic independence, he becomes a man independent from his father - who expects exactly that - that his sons will quickly grow to become independent adults. Their relationship becomes less patriarchal and more intimate and affectionate - "rules and authority are less talked of, confidence and tenderness are often increased, and it would seem that the natural bond is drawn closer in proportion as the social bond is loosened.

Equality of condition also greatly impacts the relationships among children within and outside the family. Tocqueville sums up:.

American women approach life with confidence and self reliance and a "happy boldness" that startles European visitors. Women fulfill their roles with an inward strength observable in all the different regions of the nation. The good order of her home and their place in society depend on her good sense. The men may not be chaste, but they do not flaunt promiscuity. Social standing and economic prospects - as well as immortal souls - hang in the balance. Young women also experience rapid maturity in independence. The general social response has been to expose young women early to the realities of their world so they are best equipped to deal with them.

Reconsidering Tocqueville's Democracy in America - Abraham Seldin Eisenstadt - Google книги

Their education is not a sheltered one. The result is that American women approach life with confidence and self reliance and a "happy boldness" that startles European visitors. Those women who do not "abandon themselves to evil" are "remarkable rather for purity of manners than chastity of mind.


  • Wages of Guilt: Memories of War in Germany and Japan.
  • Numéros en texte intégral;
  • Documents in International Economic Law.
  • Democratic Aesthetics.

American women, he concludes, take this role very seriously. They readily share the vicissitudes of fortune of their husbands - even following them into the hardships and dangers of the western wilds. Society demands of them a dutiful domesticity - and they widely join in with that society.

They fulfill their roles with an inward strength observable in all the different regions of the nation. Marriages are not arranged - they arise among people who willingly seek them. The rigor of the Americans arises in part from this cause. They consider marriage as a covenant which is often onerous, but every condition of which the parties are strictly bound to fulfill because they knew all those conditions beforehand and were perfectly free not to have contracted them.

Men are fully preoccupied by the pragmatic activities of their economic lives. They may not be chaste, but they do not flaunt promiscuity. Such attitudes, he notes, are not yet evident in America. The man is the head of the household - socially and legally reinforced in that status. He is engaged in "the rough labor of the fields" and the economic labors of the day that frequently require great physical strength and endurance, while the women confine themselves to "the quiet circle of domestic employments" a full time and arduous job in those days. Most women make a virtue of necessity and take pride in the accomplishment of their roles.

Tocqueville offers the following observations:. They constantly display an entire confidence in the understanding of a wife and a profound respect for her freedom; they have decided that her mind is just as fitted as that of a man to discover the plain truth, and her heart as firm to embrace it; and they have never sought to place her virtue, any more than his, under the shelter of prejudice, ignorance, and fear.

In America a young unmarried woman may alone and without fear undertake a long journey. The dangers of usurpation have been manifest frequently in Latin American democracies, but not in Anglo Saxon democracies. The best check on misuse of the military against democratic institutions, Tocqueville concludes, is a broad popular ethic of democratic principles.

The U.

An Unhinged Democracy in America

Democratic armies offer ordinary men prospects of promotion far beyond what is possible in aristocratic armies. Those with better talents and education, however, will have better prospects in civil life. War offers the possibility of far more rapid promotion, and will be welcomed by those in the middle ranks. However, those already in the highest ranks have more to lose and will be prone to caution. The soldiers of democratic armies will be more flexible and resourceful in adapting tactics to battlefield conditions because they are not so completely dependent on orders from above.

The weaknesses and lack of readiness for war of the peacetime armies of democratic nations are explained by Tocqueville.

Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville's Democracy in America

Here, the conclusions are better than the analysis. He notes more perceptively that the soldiers of democratic armies will be more flexible and resourceful in adapting tactics to battlefield conditions because they are not so completely dependent on orders from above. The persistent tendency thus, Tocqueville points out, is towards an increasing scope for government in democratic systems.

Moreover, there are always people whose ambitions run towards various government projects that they hope to profit from.

Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America Democracy Growing Up: Authority, Autonomy, and Passion in Tocqueville’s Democracy in America

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