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American liberalism and ideological change /
Leonard Williams.
DeKalb : Northern Illinois University Press, 1997.
169 p. ; 22 cm.
0875802273 (acid-free paper)
More Details
DeKalb : Northern Illinois University Press, 1997.
0875802273 (acid-free paper)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. [147]-164) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1998-02:
Toward the end of his study of changes in American liberalism, Williams (Manchester College) writes that "Ideological change is thus less a matter of replacement and more a matter of remembrance." This nicely summarizes his claim that the success of any effort to revise liberalism as an ideology depends upon its ability to recover "submerged or even marginalized elements of the dominant tradition." Both pragmatists and feminists, both the New Left and the neo-conservatives have confronted what Williams nicely calls the "dilemma of congruence": critics must either speak in terms that match the current idiom or risk dismissal; yet success on this score can undercut their more radical ambitions. This, of course, is to argue that most ideological changes in a political environment as stable as the American one will be more incremental than holistic. Not all readers will share his judgment, but Williams provides a clear and judicious argument about why this is true for different efforts to bring about ideological change. These include John Dewey's and Robert Reich's efforts at cultural transformation; the oppositional politics of, for example, the New Left; and the conceptual critiques of communitarians and feminists. Both general and academic readers at all levels. A. J. Damico; University of Florida
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, February 1998
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Unpaid Annotation
Williams explores the crisis of liberalism through a critique of recent political thought, showing how despite change it remains our most enduring public philosophy. He outlines different approaches to ideological change and sets each in the context of theories of change drawn from such disciplines as political science, sociology, history, and the philosophy of science.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Changing Liberalismp. 3
Interpretation, Critique, and the Problem of Ideological Changep. 19
Cultural Transformationp. 40
Oppositional Politicsp. 66
Conceptual Critiquep. 99
Theorizing Ideological Changep. 124
Bibliographyp. 147
Indexp. 165
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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