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The Democracy Project

Author: David Graeber
Publisher: Spiegel & Grau
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A bold rethinking of the most powerful political idea in the world—democracy—and the story of how radical democracy can yet transform America Democracy has been the American religion since before the Revolution—from New England town halls to the multicultural democracy of Atlantic pirate ships. But can our current political system, one that seems responsive only to the wealthiest among us and leaves most Americans feeling disengaged, voiceless, and disenfranchised, really be called democratic? And if the tools of our democracy are not working to solve the rising crises we face, how can we—average citizens—make change happen? David Graeber, one of the most influential scholars and activists of his generation, takes readers on a journey through the idea of democracy, provocatively reorienting our understanding of pivotal historical moments, and extracts their lessons for today—from the birth of Athenian democracy and the founding of the United States of America to the global revolutions of the twentieth century and the rise of a new generation of activists. Underlying it all is a bracing argument that in the face of increasingly concentrated wealth and power in this country, a reenergized, reconceived democracy—one based on consensus, equality, and broad participation—can yet provide us with the just, free, and fair society we want. The Democracy Project tells the story of the resilience of the democratic spirit and the adaptability of the democratic idea. It offers a fresh take on vital history and an impassioned argument that radical democracy is, more than ever, our best hope. Praise for David Graeber’s Debt “A sprawling, erudite, provocative work.”—Drake Bennett, Bloomberg Businessweek “Written in a brash, engaging style, the book is also a philosophical inquiry into the nature of debt—where it came from and how it evolved.”—The New York Times Book Review “Fresh . . . fascinating . . . thought-provoking [and] exceedingly timely.”—Financial Times “The book is more readable and entertaining than I can indicate. . . . Graeber is a scholarly researcher, an activist and a public intellectual. His field is the whole history of social and economic transactions.”—Peter Carey, The Observer “One of the year’s most influential books. Graeber situates the emergence of credit within the rise of class society, the destruction of societies based on ‘webs of mutual commitment’ and the constantly implied threat of physical violence that lies behind all social relations based on money.”—Paul Mason, The Guardian “Part anthropological history and part provocative political argument, it’s a useful corrective to what passes for contemporary conversation about debt and the economy.”—Jesse Singal, The Boston Globe “Terrific . . . In the best anthropological tradition, he helps us reset our everyday ideas by exploring history and other civilizations, then boomeranging back to render our own world strange, and more open to change.”—Raj Patel, The Globe and Mail


Examining Human Rights Issues and the Democracy Project in Sub Saharan Africa

Author: E. Ike Udogu
Publisher: Lexington Books
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This book emphasizes the symbiotic relation between the practice of human rights and democracy. In short, human rights practice furthers democracy, and the successful implementation of both promotes stability and economic development necessary for the prospects for progress in the sub-Saharan region of Africa in the twenty-first century.


The Democracy Project

Author: Democracy Project (S.C.)
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The Democracy Makers

Author: Nicolas Guilhot
Publisher: Columbia University Press
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Has the international movement for democracy and human rights gone from being a weapon against power to part of the arsenal of power itself? Nicolas Guilhot explores this question in his penetrating look at how the U.S. government, the World Bank, political scientists, NGOs, think tanks, and various international organizations have appropriated the movement for democracy and human rights to export neoliberal policies throughout the world. His work charts the various symbolic, ideological, and political meanings that have developed around human rights and democracy movements. Guilhot suggests that these shifting meanings reflect the transformation of a progressive, emancipatory movement into an industry, dominated by "experts," ensconced in positions of power. Guilhot's story begins in the 1950s when U.S. foreign policy experts promoted human rights and democracy as part of a "democratic international" to fight the spread of communism. Later, the unlikely convergence of anti-Stalinist leftists and the nascent neoconservative movement found a place in the Reagan administration. These "State Department Socialists," as they were known, created policies and organizations that provided financial and technical expertise to democratic movements, but also supported authoritarian, anti-communist regimes, particularly in Latin America. Guilhot also traces the intellectual and social trajectories of key academics, policymakers, and institutions, including Seymour M. Lipset, Jeane Kirkpatrick, the "Chicago Boys," including Milton Friedman, the National Endowment for Democracy, and the Ford Foundation. He examines the ways in which various individuals, or "double agents," were able to occupy pivotal positions at the junction of academe, national, and international institutions, and activist movements. He also pays particular attention to the role of the social sciences in transforming the old anti-Communist crusades into respectable international organizations that promoted progressive and democratic ideals, but did not threaten the strategic and economic goals of Western governments and businesses. Guilhot's purpose is not to disqualify democracy promotion as a conspiratorial activity. Rather he offers new perspectives on the roles of various transnational human rights institutions and the policies they promote. Ultimately, his work proposes a new model for understanding the international politics of legitimate democratic order and the relation between popular resistance to globalization and the "Washington Consensus."


Foreign Relations Authorization Act

Author: United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Foreign Relations
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Book Review David Graeber The Democracy Project A History A Crisis A Movement

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Diversity Social Justice and Inclusive Excellence

Author: Seth N. Asumah
Publisher: SUNY Press
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An interdisciplinary anthology exploring issues related to diversity, multiculturalism, and social justice. When students are introduced to the study of diversity and social justice, it is usually from sociological and psychological perspectives. The scholars and activists featured in this anthology reject this approach as too limiting, insisting that we adopt a view that is both transdisciplinary and multiperspectival. Their essays focus on the components of diversity, social justice, and inclusive excellence, not just within the United States but in other parts of the world. They examine diversity in the contexts of culture, race, class, gender, learned ability and dis/ability, religion, sexual orientation, and citizenship, and explore how these concepts and identities interrelate. The result is a book that will provide readers with a better theoretical understanding of diversity studies and will enable them to see and think critically about oppression and how systems of oppression may be challenged.


South Korean Social Movements

Author: Gi-Wook Shin
Publisher: Routledge
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This book explores the evolution of social movements in South Korea by focusing on how they have become institutionalized and diffused in the democratic period. The contributors explore the transformation of Korean social movements from the democracy campaigns of the 1970s and 1980s to the rise of civil society struggles after 1987. South Korea was ruled by successive authoritarian regimes from 1948 to 1987 when the government decided to re-establish direct presidential elections. The book contends that the transition to a democratic government was motivated, in part, by the pressure from social movement groups that fought the state to bring about such democracy. After the transition, however, the movement groups found themselves in a qualitatively different political context which in turn galvanized the evolution of the social movement sector. Including an impressive array of case studies ranging from the women's movement, to environmental NGOs, and from cultural production to law, the contributors to this book enrich our understanding of the democratization process in Korea, and show that the social movement sector remains an important player in Korean politics today. This book will appeal to students and scholars of Korean studies, Asian politics, political history and social movements.


Aiding Democracy Abroad

Author: Thomas Carothers
Publisher: Carnegie Endowment
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Aid to promote democracy abroad has emerged as a major growth industry in recent years. Not only the United States but many other Western countries, international institutions, and private foundations today use aid to support democratic transitions in Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union, Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East. Though extensive in scope, these activities remain little understood outside the realm of specialists. Debates among policymakers over democracy promotion oscillate between unhelpful poles of extreme skepticism and unrealistic boosterism, while the vast majority of citizens in aid-providing countries have little awareness of the democracy-building efforts their governments sponsor. Aiding Democracy Abroad is the first independent, comprehensive assessment of this important new field. Drawing on extensive field research and years of hands-on experience, Thomas Carothers examines democracy-aid programs relating to elections, political parties, governmental reform, rule of law, civil society, independent media, labor unions, decentralization, and other elements of what he describes as "the democracy template" that policymakers and aid officials apply around the world. Steering a careful path between the inflated claims of aid advocates and the exaggerated criticisms of their opponents, Carothers takes a hard look at what such programs achieve and how they can be improved.


The Democracy Reader

Author: Sondra Myers
Publisher: IDEA
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This book is an all-in-one introduction to both the theory and practice of democracy, aimed at upper-level high school and university students, as well as civic-minded adults in both old and new democracies. Portions of the book are extracted from the Democracy is a Discussion handbooks.