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Book Title: Conservatism: Dream & Reality|
The author of the book: Robert A. Nisbet
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 533 KB
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 1987 times
Reader ratings: 7.8
Edition: Taylor & Francis
Date of issue: October 17th 2001
ISBN 13: 9780765808622
Read full description of the books:
The essential concerns of conservatism are the same as those that motivated Nisbet's first and most influential book, The Quest for Community. In fact, Conservatism unites virtually all of Nisbet's work. In it, Nisbet deals with the political causes of the manifold forms of alienation that underwrite the human quest for community. The sovereign political state is more than a legal relationship of a superstructure of power, it is inseparable from its successive penetrations of man's economic, religious, kinship and local allegiances, and its revolutionary dislocations of established centers of power.
Nisbet holds that although political philosophers are often conceived in terms of their views of the individual and the state, a more useful approach adds the factor of social groups or communities mediating between the individual and the state. Such groups comprise -society- the protection of which is the -sole object- of the conservative tradition, according to Nisbet. This conservative ideology arose in the West as a reaction to the French Revolution and its perceived impact upon traditional society. Edmund Burke was the first spokesman of the new ideology. In this book, Nisbet argues that modern conservatism throughout the West can be seen as a widening of Burke's indictment not only of the French Revolution, but of the larger revolution we have come to call modernity.
From Edmund Burke and his contemporaries such as Bonald, de Maistre, Haller, and Savigny, down to T.S. Eliot, Christopher Dawson, Michael Oakeshott, Irving Babbit, Paul Elmer More, and Russell Kirk, the essential themes of political conservatism remained the same. They are centered upon history, tradition, property, authority, liberty and religion, and attack equally the political collectivism and radical individualism that have the same irrational outcomes. Nisbet makes the point that, at present, conservatism is also in a crisis, one created in large measure by mixing in the political arena economic liberalism and welfare state socialism - a lethal mix for conservative politics.
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Read information about the authorAmerican sociologist, professor at the University of California, Berkeley, Vice-Chancellor at the University of California, Riverside and as the Albert Schweitzer Professor at Columbia University.
After serving in the US Army during World War II, when he was stationed on Saipan in the Pacific theatre, Nisbet founded the Department of Sociology at Berkeley, and was briefly Chairman. Nisbet left an embroiled Berkeley in 1953 to become a dean at the University of California, Riverside, and later a Vice-Chancellor. Nisbet remained in the University of California system until 1972, when he left for the University of Arizona at Tucson. Soon thereafter, he was appointed to the prestigious Albert Schweitzer Chair at Columbia.
On retiring from Columbia in 1978, Nisbet continued his scholarly work for eight years at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington D.C. In 1988, President Reagan asked him to deliver the Jefferson Lecture in Humanities, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Nisbet's first important work, The Quest for Community (New York: Oxford University Press, 1969) contended that modern social science's individualism denied an important human drive toward community as it left people without the aid of their fellows in combating the centralizing power of the national state.
Nisbet is seen as follower of Emile Durkheim in the understanding of modern sociocultural systems and their drift. Often identified with the political right, Nisbet began his career as a political liberal but later confessed a conversion to a kind of philosophical Conservatism
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