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Democracy's Edge: Choosing to Save Our Country by Bringing Democracy to Life

by

Democracy's Edge: Choosing to Save Our Country by Bringing Democracy to Life Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In her three-million-copy bestseller Diet for a Small Planet, Frances Moore Lappé forever changed our thoughts about the politics of food; now in her latest book, she shakes up our ideas about democracy.

America at the edge?It's worse than you think. It's better than you think.

Three out of five Americans, including both Republicans and Democrats, feel our country is headed in the wrong direction. America is at the edge, a critical place at which we can either renew and revitalize or give in and lose that most precious American ideal—democracy—and along with it the freedom, fairness, and opportunities it assures.

Democracy's Edge is a rousing battle cry that we can—and must—act now. From Jefferson to Eisenhower, presidents from both parties have warned us of the danger of letting a closed, narrow group of business and government officials concentrate power over our lives. Yet today, a small and unrepresentative group of people is making vital decisions for all of us.

But this crisis is only a symptom, Lappé argues. It's a symptom of thin democracy, something done to us or for us, not by or with us. Such democracy is always at risk of being stolen by private interests or extremist groups, left and right.

But there is a solution. The answer, says Lappé, is Living Democracy, a powerful yet often invisible citizens' revolution surging in communities across America. It's not random, disjointed activism but the emergence of a new historical stage of democracy in which Americans realize that democracy isn't something we have but something we do. Either we live it or lose it, says Lappé.

Americans of all political persuasions are rising up to change the very ground rules that have led to concentrated wealth and power. They are tackling problems that have stumped the elite experts—ranging from those in electoral politics to local economies—in the media, in security, in our schools. Democracy's Edge is a rousing call to join these groundbreaking individuals—to act now to reclaim the very heart and soul of American democracy.

Book News Annotation:

Lappé (cofounder of Food First, the American News Service, and the Small Planet Institute) criticizes the dominant understanding of American democracy and proposes an alternate understanding of "Living Democracy" that she believes is needed to renew and revitalize the American political system. She identifies four problems constricting democracy: the belief that having just two political parties is the "American way," the role of campaign spending in our elections, free- market absolutism, and the idea that the sole responsibility of corporations is to the financial bottom line. She then describes examples of how various Americans are acting out "Living Democracy" practices, from economics and politics to food and the media. She concludes with a vision of how such practices can be connected in an overarching framework for transforming the whole society. Jossey-Bass is an imprint of Wiley. Annotation ©2006 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

The bestselling author of "Diet for a Small Planet" reveals a secret revolution that is happening across America, where ordinary citizens are rising up to battle the forces of consolidation of power and exclusion.

Synopsis:

Three out of five Americans, both Republicans and Democrats, feel our country is headed in the wrong direction. America is at the edge, a critical place at which we can either renew and revitalize or give in and lose that most precious American ideal—democracy—and along with it the freedom, fairness, and opportunities it assures. Democracy’s Edge is a rousing battle cry that we can—and must—act now.  From Jefferson to Eisenhower, presidents from both parties have warned us of the danger of letting a closed, narrow group of business and government officials concentrate power over our lives. Yet today, a small and unrepresentative group of people is making vital decisions for all of us.

But this crisis is only a symptom, Lappé argues. It’s a symptom of thin democracy, something done to us or for us, not by or with us. Such democracy is always at risk of being stolen by private interests or extremist groups, left and right.  But there is a solution. The answer, says Lappé, is Living Democracy, a powerful yet often invisible citizens’ revolution surging in communities across America. It’s not random, disjointed activism but the emergence of a new historical stage of democracy in which Americans realize that democracy isn’t something we have but something we do. Either we live it or lose it, says Lappé.

Synopsis:

It's not random, disjointed activism but the emergence of a new historical stage of democracy in which Americans realize that democracy isn't something we have but something we do. Either we live it or lose it, says Lappe.

About the Author

Frances Moore Lappé, author of fifteen books, has received seventeen honorary doctorates and was the fourth American to receive the Right Livelihood Award, called the Alternative Nobel Prize. She is cofounder of Food First, the American News Service, and the Small Planet Institute, www.smallplanetinstitute.org.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

The Path xi

PART ONE Living on Democracy's Edge 1
Our journey to the edge and the forces making possible an invisible revolution of hope

1. The Frame 3

2. The Long Arc 13

3. Power Is Not a Four-Letter Word 29

PART TWO Democracy Growing Up 49
Outgrowing four beliefs that stymie us and discovering that power, even corporate power, isn’t so stuck after all

4. Our Coat 51

5. The Elephant 77

PART THREE Democracy as a Verb 109
It's not what we have, it’s what we do. Americans seize the rewards of self-direction

6. Attention 111

7. Action 151

8. Choice 183

9. Voice 219

PART FOUR Democracy in Our Bones 249
Americans create a culture of empowered, connected people

10. Learning 251

11. Security 277

12. The Invitation 309

Two Frames for Democracy 319

Toward a Language of Democracy 321

Notes 325

Entry Points for Living Democracy 405

The Author 451

Index 453

Product Details

ISBN:
9780787943110
Subtitle:
Choosing to Save Our Country by Bringing Democracy to Life
Author:
Lappe, Frances Moore
With:
Burton, Rachel
With:
Lappe, Anna
Author:
Lappe, Frances Moore
Publisher:
Jossey-Bass
Subject:
Democracy
Subject:
Political participation
Subject:
Political Freedom & Security - General
Subject:
Government - U.S. Government
Subject:
Political Ideologies - Democracy
Subject:
United States Politics and government.
Subject:
Political participation -- United States.
Subject:
Politics-United States Politics
Subject:
General & Introductory Political Science
Subject:
Politics - General
Subject:
General Political Science
Copyright:
Publication Date:
October 2005
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
496
Dimensions:
9.36x6.14x1.59 in. 1.60 lbs.

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Democracy's Edge: Choosing to Save Our Country by Bringing Democracy to Life Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.95 In Stock
Product details 496 pages Jossey-Bass - English 9780787943110 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , The bestselling author of "Diet for a Small Planet" reveals a secret revolution that is happening across America, where ordinary citizens are rising up to battle the forces of consolidation of power and exclusion.
"Synopsis" by , Three out of five Americans, both Republicans and Democrats, feel our country is headed in the wrong direction. America is at the edge, a critical place at which we can either renew and revitalize or give in and lose that most precious American ideal—democracy—and along with it the freedom, fairness, and opportunities it assures. Democracy’s Edge is a rousing battle cry that we can—and must—act now.  From Jefferson to Eisenhower, presidents from both parties have warned us of the danger of letting a closed, narrow group of business and government officials concentrate power over our lives. Yet today, a small and unrepresentative group of people is making vital decisions for all of us.

But this crisis is only a symptom, Lappé argues. It’s a symptom of thin democracy, something done to us or for us, not by or with us. Such democracy is always at risk of being stolen by private interests or extremist groups, left and right.  But there is a solution. The answer, says Lappé, is Living Democracy, a powerful yet often invisible citizens’ revolution surging in communities across America. It’s not random, disjointed activism but the emergence of a new historical stage of democracy in which Americans realize that democracy isn’t something we have but something we do. Either we live it or lose it, says Lappé.

"Synopsis" by , It's not random, disjointed activism but the emergence of a new historical stage of democracy in which Americans realize that democracy isn't something we have but something we do. Either we live it or lose it, says Lappe.
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