Civil Society: 1750-1914 (Studies in European History) by Stefan-Ludwig Hoffmann

By Stefan-Ludwig Hoffmann

"Civil Society" has been an international catchphrase because the finish of the chilly struggle, and is a sizzling subject between lecturers and politicians. knowing the evolution of this idea within the eighteenth and 19th centuries is key to its research, even if within the context of historical past, sociology, politics, or diplomacy. This concise and incisive advent to the transnational background of civil society is vital examining for college kids and students alike.

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The surge in associational growth in the 1860s and 1870s must also be considered in connection with the development of the press and public sphere. Just as the number of new associations in Russia rose from a few dozen to thousands within a few years, the press in Russia – and in the rest of continental Europe – ‘took off’ in 1860 as well. The end of the Civil War and the abolition of slavery ushered in a new passion for association in the United States. Americans were already a ‘nation of joiners’ (Arthur M.

Numerous examples from voluntary associations across Europe reveal such discursive links between classical republicanism and enlightened liberalism during the decades immediately before and after 1800. This was Tocqueville’s concern, as we saw in the introduction, and he was by no means alone. One need only think of his liberal contemporaries in southwestern Germany, Carl von Rotteck and Carl Theodor Welcker, editors of the famous liberal Staatslexikon, who articulated similar concerns in articles on ‘Associationen’, ‘Gemeinsinn’ (public spirit), and ‘Bürgertugend’ (civic virtue).

The end of the Civil War and the abolition of slavery ushered in a new passion for association in the United States. Americans were already a ‘nation of joiners’ (Arthur M. Schlesinger) during the half-century before the Civil War, and virtually all important social, economic, and cultural developments in American society in the decades after the war can be understood in the context of the history of voluntary associations. The sociable network of American civil society was revitalized beginning in the mid-1860s and helped to overcome the social and political disruption caused by the war.

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