Progressivism and the New Democracy

Progressivism and the New Democracy

Progressivism and the New Democracy

Progressivism and the New Democracy

Synopsis

Political scientists and historians look at the achievements and failures of the reforms of the beginning of the 20th century in the US, and explicate the underlying political vision of an executive-centered government and participatory democracy. Emphasizing the enduring heritage of the reform tradition, they consider to extent to which problems at the end of the century resemble those at the beginning, and investigate whether there are roads not taken then that could be reexamined now. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Excerpt

This volume takes as its task a reexamination of the Progressive Era and the progressive tradition in American political history. Just as the Progressive Era brought profound changes to the country's ideas, institutions, and policies during the first two decades of the twentieth century, so it gave rise to a progressive tradition that has had an enduring influence on politics and govermnent in the United States.

As the chapters of this volume make clear, interest in the meaning and legacy of progressivism has intensified as we have approached a new century. Indeed, progressivism is not only of interest to scholars but also to prominent journalists and political activists. In a recent spate of books and articles, both liberals and conservatives -- and even some who call themselves "Progressives" -- have invoked progressive ideas in setting forth principles and programs to guide the United States into the twenty-first century. The contemporary interest in the Progressive Era signifies its profoundly important legacy for American political life. Just as surely, the different interpretations that these inquiries offer about progressivism reveal the rich possibilities and competing programs that animated the reformism of this critical period in American political history. Born at the turn of the twentieth century, the Progressive Era has widely come to be viewed as a historical period that can teach us something important about ourselves and the possibilities of our own political time.

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