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The Cultural Contradictions of Democracy:
Political Thought since September 11
John Brenkman

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"This brilliant essay on post-9/11 political thought tackles democracy's inherent contradictions: civic and liberal freedom, U.S. domestic and foreign policy, human rights and civil rights, and cosmopolitanism and liberal nationalism. Brenkman puts into play Kant and Hobbes's divergent political visions of sovereignty and human nature, Arendt and Berlin's reflections on positive and negative freedom, and Habermas and Schmitt's thoughts on law and human rights. In doing so, he opens up new and surprising spaces of reflection on the challenges confronting democracy in the United States, the European Union, and the Islamic world today. His concluding chapter on the ordeal of universalism is, moreover, the most compelling treatment of the subject I have read in a long time."--Andreas Huyssen, Columbia University

"John Brenkman's The Cultural Contradictions of Democracy is a powerful intervention into the most important political questions of our time. He deliberates over the political thought that has emerged from within the fog of war, and he produces a series of clarifying 'untimely meditations' that probe the drama of political thought in the face of the war on terror, the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, and the occupation of Iraq."--Donald Pease, Dartmouth College

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File created: 4/21/2017

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