African American Political Thought offers an unprecedented philosophical history of thinkers from the African American community and African diaspora who have addressed the central issues of political life: democracy, race, violence, liberation, solidarity, and mass political action. Melvin L. Rogers and Jack Turner have brought together leading scholars to reflect on individual intellectuals from the past four centuries, developing their list with an expansive approach to political expression. The collected essays consider such figures as Martin Delany, Ida B. Wells, W. E. B. Du Bois, James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, and Audre Lorde, whose works are addressed by scholars such as Farah Jasmin Griffin, Robert Gooding-Williams, Michael Dawson, Nick Bromell, Neil Roberts, and Lawrie Balfour. While African American political thought is inextricable from the historical movement of American political thought, this volume stresses the individuality of Black thinkers, the transnational and diasporic consciousness, and how individual speakers and writers draw on various traditions simultaneously to broaden our conception of African American political ideas. This landmark volume gives us the opportunity to tap into the myriad and nuanced political theories central to Black life. In doing so, African American Political Thought: A Collected History transforms how we understand the past and future of political thinking in the West.
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Filling in the missing spaces left by traditional textbooks on American political thought, Reconsidering American Political Thought uses race, gender, and ethnicity as a lens through which to engage ongoing debates on American values and intellectual traditions. Weaving document-based texts analysis with short excerpts from classics in American literature, this book presents a re-examination of the political and intellectual debates of consequence throughout American history. Purposely beginning the story in 1619, Saladin Ambar reassesses the religious, political, and social histories of the colonial period in American history. Thereafter, Ambar moves through the story of America, with each chapter focusing on a different era in American history up to the present day. Ambar threads together analysis of periods including Thomas Jefferson’s aspiration to create an "Empire of Liberty," the ethnic, racial, and gender-based discourse instrumental in creating a "Yankee" industrial state between 1877 and 1932, and the intellectual, cultural, and social forces that led to the political rise of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama in recent decades. In closing, Ambar assesses the prospects for a new, more invigorated political thought and discourse to reshape and redirect national energies and identity in the Trump presidency. Reconsidering American Political Thought presents a broad and subjective view about critical arguments in American political thought, giving future generations of students and lecturers alike an inclusive understanding of how to teach, research, study, and think about American political thought.
Revised and updated, this long-awaited second edition provides a comprehensive introduction to the most important American statesmen, activists, and writers regardless of the historical era or political persuasion.
Donald Lutz begins A Preface to American Political Theory by explaining what the book doesn't do. It doesn't begin with a panegyric to the American founding. It doesn't answer the following questions: "What are the basic principles in the U.S. Constitution? What were the intentions of the founders with respect to (fill in your own topic)? What is the meaning of pluralism, or separation of powers, or democracy, or (fill in your own concept)?" In short, it doesn't provide an overview of the content, development, or major conclusions of American political theory. What it does do is provide "a pre-theoretical analysis of how to go about studying questions like the ones above-how to conceptualize the project, how to proceed in looking for answers, how to avoid the logical traps peculiar to the study of American political theory." Lutz sets out to emancipate American political theorists from empiricism and inappropriate European theories and methadologies. The end result is to establish the foundation for the systematic study of American behavior, institutions, and ideas; to provide a general introduction to the study of American political theory; and to illustrate how textual analysis, history, empirical research, and analytic philosophy are all part of the enterprise. Designed for students and scholars in all disciplines, including political science, history, and legal studies, A Preface to American Political Theory doesn't provide answers to central continuing issues in American political theory. Rather, it provides an effective, sophisticated entree into the study of American political theory. Readers will be armed with the intellectual tools to engage in systematic study and makes them aware of the pitfalls they will inevitably encounter.
A concise overview of the competing political philosophies that have shaped United States history. Who are the most influential thinkers, and which are the most important concepts, events, and documents in the study of the American political tradition? How ought we regard the beliefs and motivations of the founders, the debate over the ratification of the Constitution, the historical circumstances of the Declaration of Independence, the rise of the modern presidency, and the advent of judicial supremacy? These are a few of the fascinating questions canvassed by George W. Carey in A Student’s Guide to American Political Thought. Carey’s primer instructs students on the fundamental matters of American political theory while telling them where to turn to obtain a better grasp on the ideas that have shaped the American political heritage.