Cover

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Contents

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p. vii

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Preface

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pp. ix-xi

Ever since Robert Putnam published his admonition that Americans are increasingly “bowling alone,” there has been revived attention in the United States to community. Our image of society has increasingly become one of individualism, fragmentation, and deterioration of social ties. ...

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Acknowledgments

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p. xiii

Several sections of this book are drawn from articles that have appeared in academic journals and collections of essays. I am grateful to the journals and publishers for permission to use selections from these publications. I would also very much like to thank several individuals for their support, encouragement, and constructive criticism. ...

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Introduction: Giving Circles and Democratic Governance

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pp. 1-11

The New River Valley Change Network is a group of a dozen individuals—mostly women, university students and others with varying backgrounds and experiences—who meet once a month in Blacksburg, Virginia, to give away money they collectively contribute to a fund held at their local community foundation. ...

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1. Democracy, Voluntary Association, and Philanthropy

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pp. 12-28

This chapter provides a discussion of voluntarism’s relationship to democracy and the political economy. It addresses the question: What are the potential democratic effects of voluntary associations and philanthropy? As a central concern of the book, I start this chapter by first defining the meaning of democracy. ...

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2. The Modernization and Marketization of Voluntarism

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pp. 29-43

Over the past century or more, we have witnessed the ongoing erosion of voluntarism’s ability to enhance civic engagement or other democratic contributions because voluntary organizations and philanthropy, embedded in the larger context of modernization, have become increasingly professionalized, rationalized/ bureaucratized, ...

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3. The Democratization and New Shape of Voluntarism

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pp. 44-56

We are witnessing today society’s transformation from modern to postmodern and from traditional to posttraditional. The emergence of giving circles and other “new” modes of organizing and associating are indicative of these societal trends and may offer a remedy to the problems of a modernized and marketized voluntarism. ...

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4. The Giving Circle Landscape

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pp. 57-81

Giving circles have been described as a cross between a book club and an investment group.1 They entail individuals pooling their resources to support charitable organizations, individuals in need, and individuals doing good works. Giving circles also include social, educational, and engagement components ...

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5. The Democratic Effects of Giving Circles

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pp. 82-104

This chapter examines the democratic effects of giving circles and the degree to which they might serve to ameliorate antidemocratic aspects of voluntarism and run counter to the negative effects of modernization on voluntarism. More precisely, this chapter examines the degree to which giving circles might serve to democratize voluntarism: ...

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6. Voluntarism and Governing beyond the State

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pp. 105-122

In this final chapter, I discuss themes and conclusions, based on evidence from the giving circle context, about the role of voluntarism in a democratic society. Beyond attempting to portray the dimensions of the giving circle landscape, this book has also been concerned with broad-based questions about the role of philanthropy ...

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Appendix: Research Methodology

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pp. 123-128

The data on giving circles used in this book come from two phases of research. The first phase was completed in 2005 and involved an exploratory study of the giving circle movement and gathered qualitative and quantitative data from thirty personal and telephone interviews with giving circle leaders and members and philanthropic professionals, ...

Notes

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pp. 129-146

Bibliography

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pp. 147-166

Index

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pp. 167-170