Cover: Nature and History in American Political Development: A Debate, from Harvard University PressCover: Nature and History in American Political Development in PAPERBACK

Nature and History in American Political Development

A Debate

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$30.00 • £24.95 • €27.00

ISBN 9780674027237

Publication Date: 03/31/2008


Ceaser’s analysis of American history is highly sophisticated and impressive… The discussants, two political scientists and one historian, give the volume balance both politically and intellectually… [An] engaging, deeply thoughtful, and public-spirited volume.—Daniel Walker Howe, The Claremont Review of Books

This first Alexis de Tocqueville Lecture fully lives up to its name. These are wise, elegant, witty, subversive reflections on the role of ideas in political life. Nature and History is a rich meditation on America, a feisty debate about history, and a complete delight to read.—James A. Morone, Brown University

James Ceaser has uncovered a profoundly vital aspect of American politics known by political leaders for centuries but ignored by the discipline of political science. His lecture on foundational concepts stimulated a vigorous debate on the ways students of politics should understand the role of ideas. The responses by Jack Rakove, Nancy Rosenblum, and Rogers Smith pose tough questions and Ceaser responds to their challenges in a wonderful exchange. Nature and History in American Political Development opens up an arena in the study of American politics that is new and especially important.—Jeffrey K. Tulis, The University of Texas at Austin

This book offers a double-header of a treat: James Ceaser provides the outlines of a new and altogether intriguing approach to the field of American political thought, and three of the field’s most eminent scholars write appreciative but hard-hitting critiques. Ceaser has a reply, and the entire debate echoes in the mind long after the reader has put the book down.—Michael Zuckert, University of Notre Dame

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