Designing a Polity: America's Constitution in Theory and Practice

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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Dec 16, 2010 - Political Science - 232 pages
In Designing a Polity, James W. Ceaser, one of our leading scholars of American political development, argues for the continuing central role of the Founding within the study of American government. Drawing on essays published over the past 10 years, extensively updated and revised to reflect current politics, Ceaser engages the Founding Fathers, particularly James Madison, emphasizes Alexis de Tocqueville as a model of political inquiry, critiques current and recent theorists such as Richard Rorty and Jacques Derrida, and explores the varieties of contemporary conservative thought. Designing a Polity offers a rich exploration of the core values of political sciences that will be of special interest to scholars and students of American political development, Constitutional thought, and contemporary political thought.
 

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Contents

Chapter 1 The Doctrine of Political Nonfoundationalism
3
Chapter 2 Political Foundations in Tocquevilles Democracy in America
23
Chapter 3 American Political Foundations in the Thought of Leo Strauss
45
PART II THE FOUNDERS CONSTITUTIONAL DESIGN AND THE ROLE OF POLITICAL SCIENCE
59
The American Founders and the Recovery of Political Science
61
Chapter 5 Demagoguery Statesmanship and Presidential Politics
75
Chapter 6 Doctrines of PresidentialCongressional Relations
119
PART III MODERN CONSERVATISM
139
The Modern Conservative Movement
141
Chapter 8 The Social Construction of the Reagan Legacy
153
PART IV THE AMERICAN WAY OF LIFE
165
Chapter 9 The Theoretical Origins of AntiAmericanism
167
Notes
185
Index
207
About the Author
215
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About the author (2010)

James W. Ceaser is professor of politics at the University of Virginia and a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution and member of the Boyd and Jill Task Force on Virtues of a Free Society.

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