Democracy through Public Opinion

Democracy through Public Opinion

Democracy through Public Opinion

Democracy through Public Opinion

Excerpt

Thoughtful Americans are deeply sincere about defending and advancing the "four freedoms" which are the essence of democracy in every truly democratic society. Freedom to worship God according to the dictates of our own conscience; freedom to speak for the right as we understand it; freedom to live in eventual peace, unperturbed by fear of marauding disturbers of human harmony; freedom to command the resources necessary to banish want and to mature our personal talents in socially useful skill;--these are the bill of particulars for a commonwealth where respect for human dignity prevails.

To clarify the ends and means of democracy is the duty and privilege of every citizen. This book is an experiment in clarity with reference to one sector of the problem, the proper place of public opinion. The material found here has been shaped and re-shaped in many conference lectures and discussions. In no sense is it a "war baby"; the war adds only urgency to the basic task of an aspiring democratic society.

Any one who desires to pursue further the study of public opinion may refer for guidance to H. D. Lasswell , R. D. Casey, and B. L. Smith, Propaganda and Promotional Activities; an Annotated Bibliography, University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1935. Since 1937 this bibliography has been continued by B. L. Smith in the Public Opinion Quarterly, Princeton University Press.

The voluminous literature on democracy can be followed through the reviews in such professional journals as American Political Science Review, organ of the American Political Science Association, and . . .

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