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The Communal Experience: Anarchist and Mystical Communities in Twentieth Century America (Phoenix Book)

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The Communal Experience: Anarchist and Mystical Communities in Twentieth Century America (Phoenix Book) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The original impulse for groups to separate from society and establish communities of their own was religious. Though the religious side of this drive toward separation remains strong, the last two centuries have seen the appearance of secular communities with a socialist or anarchist orientation. In The Communal Experience, nominated for a National Book Award in 1973, Laurence Veysey explores the close resemblances between the secular and religious forms of cultural radicalism through intensive observation of four little-known communities.

Veysey compares the history of secular communities such as the early Ferrer Colony and Modern School, of Shelton, New Jersey, with contemporary anarchist communities in New York, Vermont, and New Mexico. Religious communes—"Communities of Discipline"—such as the Vedanta monasteries of the early twentieth century are compared with contemporary mystical communities in New Mexico. Distinctions between the anarchist and the mystical groups are most obvious from their approach to communal life. As Veysey shows, anarchist communities are loose, unstructured, voluntaristic; the mystics establish more rigid life-styles, focus on spiritual leaders, and hold community a secondary goal to self-realization. In a new preface written for this Phoenix Edition, he describes his return to a New Mexican mystical community and the changes that have occurred in the six years since his last visit.

Synopsis:

In The Communal Experience, nominated for a National Book Award in 1973, Laurence Veysey explores the close resemblances between the secular and religious forms of cultural radicalism through intensive observation of four little-known communities.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Phoenix Edition

Acknowledgments

Introduction

1. In Search of a Counter-Cultural Tradition

Part 1 - Anarchistic Communities

2. The Ferrer Colony and Modern School of Stelton, New Jersey

The Ferrer Center and the Immigrant Life of New York

Why Native Americans Joined the Ferrer Movement

Flight from the City

The Building of the Colony

The Educational Radicalism of Elizabeth and Alexis Ferm

Conflict Over Ideals

Decline and Disappearance

3. Contemporary Anarchistic Communes

New York

Vermont

New Mexico

Part II - Communities of Discipline

4. Vedanta Monasteries

The Vedanta Movement in America

Vedanta and Community

Encounters Between Swamis and American Seekers

The Limitations of the Monastic Impulse

5. New Mexico, 1971: Inside a "New Age" Social Order

The External Tour

Journal of a Five Weeks' Stay

History and Intellectual Sources

Individuals

The Strength of the Fledgling Culture

Ezra

The Old in the New

Seven Months Later

6. The Trend of American Cultural Radicalism

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780226854588
Author:
Veysey, Laurence
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Author:
Veysey, Laurence
Location:
Chicago :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Sociology - General
Subject:
Communism & Socialism
Subject:
Mysticism
Subject:
Community life
Subject:
Anarchism and anarchists
Subject:
Collective settlements
Subject:
Radicalism
Subject:
Radicalism -- United States.
Subject:
General Social Science
Subject:
Political Ideologies - Communism & Socialism
Subject:
Collective settlements -- United States.
Subject:
Politics-Leftist Studies
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Paperback
Series:
Phoenix Book
Series Volume:
21
Publication Date:
20081231
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
512
Dimensions:
9.06x6.09x1.06 in. 1.30 lbs.

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Politics » Leftist Studies
History and Social Science » Politics » Utopia
History and Social Science » Sociology » General

The Communal Experience: Anarchist and Mystical Communities in Twentieth Century America (Phoenix Book) New Trade Paper
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Product details 512 pages University of Chicago Press - English 9780226854588 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In The Communal Experience, nominated for a National Book Award in 1973, Laurence Veysey explores the close resemblances between the secular and religious forms of cultural radicalism through intensive observation of four little-known communities.
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