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Making of Tocqueville's America : Law and Association in the Early United States (Hardcover) (Kevin

Making of Tocqueville's America : Law and Association in the Early United States (Hardcover) (Kevin - image 1 of 1
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Alexis de Tocqueville was among the first to draw attention to Americans’ propensity to form voluntary associations—and to join them with a fervor and frequency unmatched anywhere in the world. For nearly two centuries, we have sought to understand how and why early nineteenth-century Americans were, in Tocqueville’s words, “forever forming associations.” InThe Making of Tocqueville’s America, Kevin Butterfield argues that to understand this, we need to first ask: what did membership reallymean to the growing number of affiliated Americans?Butterfield explains that the first generations of American citizens found in the concept of membership—in churches, fraternities, reform societies, labor unions, and private business corporations—a mechanism to balance the tension between collective action and personal autonomy, something they accomplished by emphasizing law and procedural fairness. As this post-Revolutionary procedural culture developed, so too did the legal substructure of American civil society. Tocqueville, then, was wrong to see associations as the training ground for democracy, where people learned to honor one another’s voices and perspectives. Rather, they were the training ground for something no less valuable to the success of the American democratic experiment: increasingly formal and legalistic relations among people.
Number of Pages: 311.0
Genre: History, Social Science, Freedom + Security / Law Enforcement
Sub-Genre: History
Series Title: Historical Studies of Urban America
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
Author: Kevin Butterfield
Language: English
Street Date: November 19, 2015
TCIN: 50177425
UPC: 9780226297088
Item Number (DPCI): 248-03-5488

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