Tocqueville on Democracy
Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America (1835/40) can claim to be the best book ever written about democracy and the best book ever written about America. David discusses what Tocqueville was expecting when he went to see American democracy for himself and what he actually found. Tocqueville was amazed and impressed by the American way of doing politics, but his fears about how its democracy might go wrong remain as prescient as ever.
Free online version of the text:
Recommended version to purchase:
- In Our Time on Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
- Harvey C. Mansfield, Jr, Tocqueville: a very short introduction (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010)
- Annette Gordon Reed, ‘America’s Original Sin: Slavery and the Legacy of White Supremacy’
- Hugh Brogan, Alexis de Tocqueville: prophet of democracy in the age of revolution (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2007).
- Talking Politics American History series on the 15th and 19th amendment
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