By Lucien Jaume,Arthur Goldhammer

ISBN-10: 0691152047

ISBN-13: 9780691152042

Many American readers wish to regard Alexis de Tocqueville as an honorary American and democrat--as the younger French aristocrat who got here to early the United States and, enthralled by means of what he observed, proceeded to jot down an American e-book explaining democratic the United States to itself. but, as Lucien Jaume argues during this acclaimed highbrow biography, Democracy in America is better understood as a French publication, written essentially for the French, and overwhelmingly curious about France. "America," Jaume says, "was in simple terms a pretext for learning glossy society and the woes of France." For Tocqueville, briefly, the United States used to be a replicate for France, a fashion for Tocqueville to put in writing not directly approximately his personal society, to have interaction French thinkers and debates, and to come back to phrases with France's aristocratic legacy.

by way of taking heavily the concept Tocqueville's French context is vital for knowing Democracy in America, Jaume presents a strong and remarkable new interpretation of Tocqueville's ebook in addition to a clean highbrow and mental portrait of the writer. Situating Tocqueville within the context of the difficulty of authority in postrevolutionary France, Jaume exhibits that Tocqueville was once an ambivalent promoter of democracy, a guy who attempted to reconcile himself to the arrival wave, yet who was once additionally nostalgic for the aristocratic global within which he used to be rooted--and who believed that it might be essential to safeguard aristocratic values which will guard liberty lower than democracy. certainly, Jaume argues that one in every of Tocqueville's most vital and unique rules used to be to acknowledge that democracy posed the specter of a brand new and hidden type of despotism.

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Tocqueville: The Aristocratic Sources of Liberty by Lucien Jaume,Arthur Goldhammer


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