Tocqueville did not operate on the assumption that there must be a single underlying law that explains the processes that he observed in Manchester, Boston, or Algiers; instead, he was content to observe the diversity of the social phenomena he discovered and to tease out some possible, historically limited causal hypotheses about how these historically specific phenomena might work.
Because society is mainly comprised of small property owners who have an interest in maintaining the status quo, the bulk of people are hesitant to risk losing their property in a revolution.
But such a law would be unpopular. Whereas Tocqueville sees society as following a trend towards fundamental equality in which industrial capitalism is an aberration, Marx views society as becoming composed of two antagonistic classes which are increasingly polarized as the dynamic of industrial capitalism operates and industrial capitalism becomes more dominant.
Even in New England, where there were comparatively few slaves, the economy was rooted in the slave trade with the West Indies. He went as far as openly advocating racial segregation between the European colonists and the Arabs through the implementation of two different legislative systems a half century before implementation of the Indigenous code based on religion.
Tocqueville's conservative view of the world certainly interacted with his observations and recommendations. Tocqueville was a partisan, supportive of the repression inflicted by the state in the name of order. There were an estimatedcasualties, 3 per cent of the total population of the United States.
He was right as well to be anxious about the magnitude of the problem. Take the sale of strong liquor. In those states where slavery had been abolished, black people who dared to vote, or to serve on juries, were threatened with murder. Pierre Essai politique sur Alexis de Tocqueville.
In particular, the author differentiates between what he terms "dominance" and a particular version of "colonization". As a man, too, I am moved at the spectacle of man's degradation by man, and I hope to see the day when the law will grant equal civil liberty to all the inhabitants of the same empire, as God accords the freedom of the will, without distinction, to the dwellers upon earth.
Tocqueville also pointed out that these civil associations had radical social implications. Why does democracy tend to interrupt certainties, impeach them, enable people to see that things could be other than they presently are.
Men love to drink, and in America they love their freedom to choose to drink or not.
In describing the American, he agreed with thinkers such as Aristotle and Montesquieu that the balance of property determined the balance of political power, but his conclusions after that differed radically from those of his predecessors.
With good reason, looking into the future, Tocqueville worried not only about the decline of public spirit within this middle class.
This, even for the sake of interest is more noxious than useful; for, as another officer was telling me, if our sole aim is to equal the Turks, in fact we shall be in a far lower position than theirs: No lofty views, no spiritual conception presided over the foundation of these new settlements.
Third is the gradual disappearance of great cultural themes in the wash of mediocrity that attends adulation of the common man and fear of the extraordinary. In andhe traveled to Algeria.
My book is no manual to instruct tyrants. In Europe, it was the sociological elements of his work—those found in the second volume of Democracy in America and The Old Regime—that early proved of greatest influence.
Here the social scene he was describing was not America but France, in the age just prior to the French Revolution. Hemmed in by language and horizons of time and space, reading is always a stylising of past reality.
I do not think it is for me, a foreigner, to indicate to the United States the time, the measures, or the men by whom Slavery shall be abolished. As Tocqueville had foreseen, these social tensions eventually exploded during the June Days Uprising of Tocqueville wrote that he did not know of any country where there was "less independence of mind, and true freedom of discussion, than in America".
Acts of reading past texts are always time- and space-bound interpretations and, as one of my teachers Hans-Georg Gadamer liked to remark, all such interpretations of past texts turn out to be misinterpretations.
Unfortunately, these philosophers could not account for these problems nor resolve them. Some observers, very often American, push this interpretation to the limit. Tocqueville might have been expected to say that because periodic elections stir things up they are the prime cause of the shared sense of the contingency of power relations.
Their political manipulations must go unnoticed, or better yet, appeal to the popular sentiments. They think of Democracy in America in almost nationalist terms:.
marx's contribution to the development of modern social theory: understanding the fundamental. In Tocqueville's Discovery of America, the prizewinning biographer Leo Damrosch retraces Tocqueville's nine-month journey through the young nation in –32, illuminating how his enduring ideas were born of imaginative interchange with America and Americans, and painting a /5(3).
French sociologist and political theorist Alexis de Tocqueville () traveled to the United States in to study its prisons and returned with a wealth of broader observations that he. Why Read Tocqueville’s Democracy in America?
sense of their world by harnessing their own individual understanding of things. stood against Marx and sided with such. I am a philosopher of social science with a strong interest in Asia. I have written books on social explanation, Marx, late imperial China, the philosophy of history, and the ethics of.
Was Alexis de Tocqueville a social scientist? of course, the same upheavals to which Marx referred in the Communist Manifesto as the "spectre that is haunting Europe.") I have come to see that understanding social processes is in many ways more difficult than understanding the natural world.
Take the traditional dichotomy between.Understanding of marx and tocquiville