Republicanism by Maurizio Viroli

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A provocative new study of the political ideals that should guide a republic

At the beginning of a new century, there is renewed interest in the traditions and ideas that have inspired political republicanism. Maurizio Viroli, who has written extensively on democracy and nationalism, stresses that republicanism is a political ideal for citizens everywhere who are committed to the work of sustaining civic virtue. He explores republicanism's commitment to a rule of law administered on behalf of all citizens equally, to liberty, and to the repudiation of monarchy, aristocracy, and all discriminatory state formations.

Viroli traces the story of political republicanism from its origins with Aristotle and in classical Rome to its renaissance with Machiavelli, then to its great flowering in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries with Locke, Kant, Rousseau, Tom Paine, and the Founding Fathers. He concludes with an impassioned evocation of the power of the republican ideal in our own time. We can derive from it, he suggests, a form of wisdom and strength that protects civic democracy and enriches private life.

About Maurizio Viroli

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Maurizio Viroli has written many works on political philosophy, including "Niccolo's Smile: A Biography of Machiavelli" (FSG, 2000). A professor of politics at Princeton University, he lives in Princeton, New Jersey, and Forli, Italy.
Published February 11, 2001 by Hill and Wang. 144 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

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Its relevance to American readers, used to a low level of individual political involvement before mid-September 2001, extends even to the most apolitical or apathetic, whom Viroli’s elusive definition of republicanism assures that their involvement in government isn’t really necessary, since “it ...

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