Investigating American Democracy: Readings on Core Questions

Paperback | June 29, 2012

byThomas K. Lindsay, Gary D. Glenn

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"The boisterous sea of liberty is never without a wave." - Thomas Jefferson From its very beginning, American government has been a continuously evolving and contentious enterprise defined by profound questions like "Who has the right to vote, on what, and why?" "Why does American democracy separate the powers of government?" and "What do our persistent debates overreligion, citizenship, and law reveal about the nature of American democracy?" Addressing these and five other vital questions, Investigating American Democracy: Readings on Core Questions is ideal for a variety of courses in American politics. Each chapter opens with a core question that leads into readings reflecting conflicting views on that question. This"point-counterpoint" approach helps students to critically evaluate and compare the readings and to form their own opinions on each issue. Ranging from the founding of the country to the present day, the selections include writings and speeches from such illustrious historical figures as Thomas Jefferson, Alexis de Tocqueville, Frederick Douglass, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Jane Addams, and Franklin D. Roosevelt alongside work from morecontemporary political leaders including Martin Luther King, Jr., Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. Considerable sections of important Supreme Court opinions are also included. The editors provide "Guiding Questions" for each reading and extensive historical backgroundfor each chapter and reading. An Instructor's Manual containing test-bank questions is available to adopters.

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"The boisterous sea of liberty is never without a wave." - Thomas Jefferson From its very beginning, American government has been a continuously evolving and contentious enterprise defined by profound questions like "Who has the right to vote, on what, and why?" "Why does American democracy separate the powers of government?" and "What...

Thomas K. Lindsay is Former Deputy Chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Gary D. Glenn is Distinguished Teaching Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Northern Illinois University.

other books by Thomas K. Lindsay

A History of the Reformation (Vol. 1 of 2) - The Original Classic Edition
A History of the Reformation (Vol. 1 of 2) - The Origin...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 9.25 × 7.5 × 0.68 inPublished:June 29, 2012Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195392116

ISBN - 13:9780195392111

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgmentsPreface1. Thomas K. Lindsay: Why a "Core-Questions" approach to the study of American democracy, and why should such study include the examination of "old books"?2. Core Question: What is American democracy? Over two centuries of dispute over our national identityAt the Founding: Was America founded as a "democracy" or a "republic"? The confusion regarding the Founders' intentionsJames Madison: Excerpt from The Federalist, No. 10James Madison: The Federalist, No. 39What is "Jeffersonian Democracy," and what is its contemporary relevance?Thomas Jefferson: "First Inaugural Address" (1801)The "demographics" of American political equality: Early-American democracy, according to de TocquevilleEquality of conditionsAlexix Tocqueville: Democracy in America, [hereafter, "DA"] (1833, Trans., Henry Reeve), "Author's Introduction"Majority ruleAlexis de Tocqueville: DA, "On Majority Rule"The "House Divided" - What the battle over slavery reveals about America's core principlesThomas Jefferson: Notes on the State of Virginia (1784)William Lloyd Garrison: "Resolution" (1843)Frederick Douglass: "The Meaning of the Fourth of July for the Negro" (July 5, 1852)Alexander Stephens: "Cornerstone Speech" (1861)Abraham Lincoln: "Address Delivered at the Dedication of the Cemetery at Gettysburg" (1863)Critiquing the Founders' Vision: The Progressives' Argument that a Genuine Political Democracy Requires "Economic Democracy"Theodore Roosevelt: "Two Noteworthy Books on Democracy" (1914)Franklin D. Roosevelt: "Commonwealth Club Campaign Speech" (1932)Franklin D. Roosevelt: "The Economic Bill of Rights" (1944)Lyndon Johnson: "The Great Society" (1964)The Rise of "Civil-Liberties Democracy"Are courts, or the people and their representatives, the best guardians of liberty?The Opinion of the Court in West Virginia v. Barnette (1943)What is the proper balance between individual liberty and national security?Russ Feingold: "On the Anti-Terrorism Bill" (2001)John Ashcroft: "Address Before the Federalist Society" (2003)Extending The National Government's Reach to Ensure Protection of Minorities: The Movement Toward "Civil-Rights Democracy"Martin Luther King, Jr.: "I Have a Dream" (1963)The Opinion of the Court in Grutter v. Bollinger (2003)3. Core Question: What political-economic conditions, and character in the people, might best allow American democracy to balance liberty and equality?The argument over "small" versus "large" democracy, and why it still matters todayDemocracy can succeed only in a large countryJames Madison: Second Excerpt from Federalist 10Democracy can succeed only in a small country"Brutus I" (1787)"Centinel I" (1787)What competing notions of democracy drive our ongoing debate over decentralized, locally oriented government versus centralized federal government?Thomas Jefferson: "On Citizenship"Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "On Individualism and Related Subjects"Lamar Alexander: "Cut Their Pay and Send Them Home" (1994)Does it matter whether America is an "agrarian" or an "industrial" democracy?Thomas Jefferson: Notes on the State of Virginia (1784)Alexander Hamilton: "Report on Manufactures" (1791)FederalismWhat is the optimal relation between the national and state governments with the view to enhancing both liberty and equality?Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "Advantages of the Federal System in General . . . "Ronald Reagan: "State of the Union Address" (1982)The Opinion of the Court in Garcia v. San Antonio (1985)Might equality both make democratic liberty possible and, then, destroy it?Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "Why Democratic Nations Show a More Ardent . . ."4. Core Question: Who has the right to vote, on what, and why?Why do we hold elections?James Madison: Federalist 52If everyone must have the right to vote in order for America to qualify as a democracy, when did it become a democracy? Voting eligibility under the original ConstitutionU.S. Constitution, Article I, Sections 2-3Chancellor Kent: "On Universal Suffrage" (1821)Extending the right to vote to women: Does the Declaration of Independence provide a principled basis for the equal rights of women?"The Seneca Falls Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions" (1848)Addams's argument for the practical benefits of extending the franchiseJane Addams: "Why Women Should Vote" (1910)Why did an earlier Supreme Court deny that the 14th Amendment extends the vote to women?The Opinion of the Court in Minor v. Happersett (1875)19th Amendment to the United States Constitution (1920)Competing Visions of Sexual Equality: "Complementarity" versus "sameness"Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "How the American Views the Equality of the Sexes"Barbara Jordan: "Change: From What to What?" (1992)Extending the right to vote to former slaves and their descendants15th Amendment to the United States Constitution (1870)Lyndon Johnson: "Voting Rights Act Speech" (1965)Extending the right to vote to 18-year-olds: What was the chief argument employed to justify this extension?26th Amendment to the United States Constitution (1971)Are any principled limits on the right to vote consistent with American democracy?Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "The People's Choice and the Instincts of American Democracy . . ."U.S. Senator Carol Moseley-Braun, "The Motor-Voter Bill" (1994)Who and what should voters have a right to vote for (directly)?James Madison: Federalist 6317th Amendment, U.S. ConstitutionPresidential election through the "Electoral College," rather than through "direct popular election"United States Constitution: Art II, Sec. 1, Clauses 2-4 (1787), 12th Amendment (1804)5. Core Question: What is democratic representation meant to accomplish, and what is the role of race?Representation in the view of the Founders and de TocquevilleAlexander Hamilton: "On the Character of the Legislator" (1778)Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, Excerpts on "Parties" and "Governance of the People"Recent judicial concerns over representationThe Opinion of the Court (Chief Justice Warren) in Reynolds v. Sims (1964)Dissenting Opinion in Reynolds v. Sims (Justice Harlan)The Opinion of the Court in South Carolina v. Katzenbach (1966)The Opinion of the Court in Miller v. Johnson (1995)Should representation take account of individuals or groups, or both?Lani Guinier: "Groups, Representation, and Race-Conscious Districting . . . "Thurgood Marshall: "Remarks at the Annual Seminar of the San Francisco . . ."Robert Goldwin: "Why Blacks, Women, and Jews are Not Mentioned in the Constitution"Recent presidential reflections on race and the ConstitutionBill Clinton: "Mend It, Don't End It" (1995)Barack Obama: "A More Perfect Union" (Speech on Race in America, 2008)6. Core Question: Why does American democracy separate the powers of government?The original Constitution's design for the separation of powersJames Madison: Federalist 47James Madison: Federalist 48How does separation of powers aim to secure liberty?James Madison: Federalist 51Justice Brandeis: Myers v. U.S. (1926)How and why does separation of powers aim to make possible an "energetic"president, who is "independent" of the legislature?James Madison: Federalist 37Alexander Hamilton: Federalist 70Franklin D. Roosevelt: "Interview by Arthur Krock" (1937)Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "On Foreign Affairs"How and why does separation of powers aim to make possible an independent judiciary?Alexander Hamilton: Federalist 78Thomas Jefferson: "Against Judicial Review" (1815)Should the state courts enjoy the same independence afforded the federal courts?Theodore Roosevelt: "The Recall of Judicial Decisions" (1912)7. Core Question: What do our persistent debates over religion, citizenship, and law reveal about the nature of American democracy?The debate over whether religion is a problem for, or an institution in, American democracyHow can religion be understood to be a "political institution" in American democracy?George Washington: "Farewell Address" (1796)Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "On Religion as a Political Institution"How can religion be understood to be a political problem for American democracy?Thomas Jefferson: "A Bill for Establishing Religious Freedom" (1786)Thomas Jefferson: "Letter to Nehemiah Dodge and Others . . ." (1802)The Opinion of the Court in Everson v. Board of Education (1947)Ronald Reagan: "Remarks at an Ecumenical Prayer Breakfast" (1984)Walter Mondale: "Remarks to International Convention of B'nai B'rith" (1984)Citizenship: What makes one an American?Dispute over the role of race in citizenship14th Amendment to the United States Constitution (1868)Abraham Lincoln: "Speech in Reply to Douglass at Chicago, Illinois" (July 10, 1858)Stephen A. Douglas: "From the Fifth Joint Debate [with Lincoln]" (October 7, 1858)"Lincoln's Reply to Douglas," October 7, 1858The Opinion of the Court in Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857)The status of law under American principlesIs lawlessness built into the very foundations of American political life?The Declaration of IndependenceWhat is law-abidingness in the American context?Abraham Lincoln: "Speech on the Dred Scott Decision" (June 26, 1857)Frederick Douglass: "On the Dred Scott Decision" (May 11, 1857)Why should we obey the law?Alexis de Tocqueville: DA, "Respect for Law in the United States"Abraham Lincoln: "The Perpetuation of our Political Institutions" (1838)The case for civil disobedienceMartin Luther King, Jr.: "Letter from Birmingham Jail" (1963)8. Postscript: Democracy outside AmericaCore Question: To what extent might America's experience with democracy provide guidance to countries struggling to establish it?Czech President Vaclav Havel: Address to a Joint Session of the U.S. Congress (1990)President George W. Bush: "Speech to the Knesset" (2008)President Barack Obama: "Speech in Cairo" (2009)