By Charles W. Anderson
"An eloquent safety of liberal democracy, no longer quite a bit as summary philosophy yet as a fashion of life." ."—Jean Bethke Elshtain, collage of Chicago, writer of Democracy on Trial at the present time those that think in liberal democracy needs to reexamine and reaffirm their commitments. the following, Charles Anderson probes our pressing issues and questions. Even those that think that liberal democracy is the simplest kind of govt might imagine that liberal individualism results in selfishness, permissiveness, and irresponsibility. Many could educate a cultural or non secular counter-ethic to offset the excesses of freedom. Grounding his view in vintage philosophic and spiritual beliefs, Anderson argues deeper imaginative and prescient of individuality and freedom can result in either a legitimate public philosophy and a helpful own ethic. within the related method that we as people attempt to comprehend our position in nature and the cosmos, Anderson seeks to appreciate how we, as special members, can comprehend our position between our fellow people. starting with friendship and love, he extends his inquiry to the relationships of training, group, paintings, and democracy. Anderson indicates how the common hope of unfastened humans to discover that means in relationships with each other can result in intensity and fullness either in deepest and public lifestyles.
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Extra info for A Deeper Freedom: Liberal Democracy as an Everyday Morality
John Dewey certainly thought so, and the optimism of his belief in the potential intelligence of democracy lingered as an extraordinary strand in American political thought until quite recently. Karl Marx and John Stuart Mill, in different ways and with different hesitations and ambiguities, also thought that the way of inquiry might become the way of democracy. But Plato, who is father of us all, had his doubts. In most readings he seemed to believe that the life of philosophy was open only to very few, that most of humanity would live lives mainly of passion and necessity.
As usual, there are ancient precedents. Protagoras, and the Sophists generally, had a similar theory of knowledge. For this generation Michel Foucault is the acknowledged high priest. Professors often teach his version of this conception of the problem of freedom to the young today. For Foucault the distinctiveness of modern society lies in its tight, rationalized social order. To make this system work individuals have to be rigidly disciplined, inhibited, self-controlled. Directing air trafWc, performing surgery, or, for that matter, brokering stock allows little room for personal expression or uninhibited impulse.
We Wnd this out in school. Knowledge is plural. The approaches to learning are diverse and have little overall coherence. Each subject calls for a separate response. We must approach science, literature, and mathematics with distinct attitudes and skills and, for that matter, beliefs. You do not give a subjective impression of a mathematical proof. You do not claim that your reading of a text is axiomatically correct. We Wnd out that what we learn from our religion has absolutely no bearing on what we learn in school and the other way around.
A Deeper Freedom: Liberal Democracy as an Everyday Morality by Charles W. Anderson