timony of such appearances, it points politics toward the soul. Moreover, a politics founded on the belief in equality excludes racism and relativism, for it holds that what is human is more important than biology or culture. 94 There is also a contemporary truth in the promise of just equality, with its suggestion that equality can be unjust.
America cannot be an ancient Greek polis or a homogenous community; political life must find room for our diversities and our privacies, just as prudence must acknowledge the impact of technology and economic change. American democracy needs, and can stand, only so many stanzas of epic poetry; contemporary politics calls for the more prosaic effort to protect and rebuild locality, association, and party, the links between private individuals and public goods. Even such limited goals, however, presume policy guided by a ruling principle, that middle term between repression and relativism whose better name is citizenship. 95 For both Republicans and Democrats, the election of 1988 indicates the need for a new civility, and for the kinds of word and deed necessary to affirm, for the coming century, the dignity of self-government.