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The freedom to take part in civic life--whether in the exercise of one's right to vote or congregate and protest--has become increasingly less important to Americans than individual rights and liberties. In Public Freedom, renowned political theorist Dana Villa argues that political freedom is essential to both the preservation of constitutional government and the very sub ...more
Paperback, 438 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Princeton University Press
(first published August 11th 2008)
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Maybe this deserves more than three, which is a mark of disappointment more than actual mediocrity (as though anyone cares how many stars I choose!). I think Villa's book on Arendt/Heidegger is stellar, but this one doesn't compare. It's more a collection of somewhat repetitive essays. He begins with his heroes (Tocqueville, Mill, Hegel) who want to show how, via civil society, a civic republicanism is possible that embraces Arendt-style political pluralism and does not degenerate into Rousseau- ...more