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From Equality to Hierarchy in Post-Classical Economics
The "Vanity of the Philosopher" continues the themes introduced in Levy's acclaimed book How the Dismal Science Got Its Name. Here, Peart and Levy tackle the issues of racism, eugenics, hierarchy, and egalitarianism in classical economics and take a broad view of classical economics' doctrine of human equality. Responding to perennial accusations from the left and the right that the market economy has created either inequality or too much equality, the authors trace the role of the eugenics movement in pulling economics away from the classical economist's respect for the individual toward a more racist view at the turn of the century. The "Vanity of the Philosopher" reveals the consequences of hierarchy in social science. It shows how the "vanity of the philosopher" has led to recommendations that range from the more benign but still objectionable "looking after" paternalism, to overriding preferences, and, in the extreme, to eliminating purportedly bad preferences. The authors suggest that an approach that abstracts from difference and presumes equal competence is morally compelling. "People in the know on intellectual history and economics await the next book from Peart and Levy with much the same enthusiasm that greets a new Harry Potter book in the wider world. This book delivers the anticipated delights big time!" -William Easterly, Professor of Economics and Africana Studies, NYU, and non-resident Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development "In their customary idiosyncratic manner, Sandra Peart and David Levy reexamine the way in which the views of classical economists on equality and hierarchy were shifted by contact with scholars in other disciplines, and the impact this had on attitudes towards race, immigration, and eugenics. This is an imaginative and solid work of scholarship, with an important historical message and useful lessons for scholars today." -Stanley Engerman, John Munro Professor of Economics and Professor of History, University of Rochester Sandra J. Peart, Professor of Economics at Baldwin-Wallace College, has published articles on utilitarianism, the methodology of J. S. Mill, and the transition to neoclassicism. This is her fourth book. David M. Levy is Professor of Economics at George Mason University and Director of the Center for Study of Public Choice. This is his third book.
Winner of the 1996 Drue Heinz Literature Prize. To author Edith Pearlman, "The stories in Vaquita aim at an intimacy between writer and reader. That imagined reader wants to know who loves whom, who drinks what, and, mostly, who answers to what summons. Thank Heavens for Spike Lee! Before his movies writers and critics had to natter about moral stances; now I can say with a more tripping tongue that my characters are people in peculiar circumstances, aching to Do The Right Thing if only they can figure out what The Right Thing is. If not, they’ll at least Do Their Own Right Thing Right."
World-renowned philosopher, Michel Serres writes a text in praise of the body and movement, in praise of teachers of physical education, coaches, mountain guides, athletes, dancers, mimes, clowns, artisans, and artists. This work describes the variations, the admirable metamorphoses that the body can accomplish. While animals lack such a variety of gestures, postures, and movements, the fluidity of the human body mimics the leisure of living beings and things; what’s more, it creates signs. Already here, within its movements and metamorphoses, the mind is born. The five senses are not the only source of knowledge: it emerges, in large part, from the imitations the plasticity of the body allows. In it, with it, by it knowledge begins.
Nation-States as Works in Progress
Why do some countries progress while others stagnate? Why does adversity strengthen some countries and weaken others? Indeed, in this era of unprecedented movement of people, goods, and ideas, just what constitutes a nation-state? Forrest Colburn and Arturo Cruz suggest how fundamental these questions are through an exploration of the evolution of Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica over the last quarter of a century, a period of intriguing, often confounding, paradoxes in Central America’s development. Offering an elegant defense of empiricism, Colburn and Cruz explore the roles of geography and political choice in constructing nations and states. Countries are shown to be unique: there are a daunting number of variables. There is causality, but not the kind that can be revealed in the laboratory or on the blackboard. Liberalism—today defined as democracy and unfettered markets—may be in vogue, but it has no inherent determinants. Democracy and market economies, when welded to the messy realities of individual countries, are compatible with many different outcomes. The world is more pluralistic in both causes and effects than either academic theories or political rhetoric suggest.
On the eve of the American Revolution there existed throughout the British-American colonial world a variety of contradictory expectations about the political process. Not only was there disagreement over the responsibilities of voters and candidates, confusion extended beyond elections to the relationship between elected officials and the populations they served. So varied were people's expectations that it is impossible to talk about a single American political culture in this period.
In The Varieties of Political Experience in Eighteenth-Century America, Richard R. Beeman offers an ambitious overview of political life in pre-Revolutionary America. Ranging from Virginia, Massachusetts, New York, South Carolina, and Pennsylvania to the backcountry regions of the South, the Mid-Atlantic, and northern New England, Beeman uncovers an extraordinary diversity of political belief and practice. In so doing, he closes the gap between eighteenth-century political rhetoric and reality.
Political life in eighteenth-century America, Beeman demonstrates, was diffuse and fragmented, with America's British subjects and their leaders often speaking different political dialects altogether. Although the majority of people living in America before the Revolution would not have used the term "democracy," important changes were underway that made it increasingly difficult for political leaders to ignore "popular pressures." As the author shows in a final chapter on the Revolution, those popular pressures, once unleashed, were difficult to contain and drove the colonies slowly and unevenly toward a democratic form of government. Synthesizing a wide range of primary and secondary sources, Beeman offers a coherent account of the way politics actually worked in this formative time for American political culture.
Changes and Challenges in 20th Century Indonesian Islam
The twentieth century was a fascinating period of profound political, social and economic changes in Indonesia. These changes contributed to the diversification of the religious landscape and as a result, religious authority was redistributed over an increasing number of actors. Although many Muslims in Indonesia continued to regard the ulama, the traditional religious scholars, as the principle source of religious guidance, religious authority has become more diffused and differentiated over time. The present book consists of contributions which all deal with the multi-facetted and multidimensional topic of religious authority and aim to complement each other. Most papers deal with Indonesia, but two dealing with other countries have been included in order to add a comparative dimension. Amongst the topics dealt with are the different and changing roles of the ulama, the rise and role of Muslim organizations, developments within Islamic education, like the madrasa, and the spread of Salafi ideas in contemporary Indonesia.