Whoever you are, you may be a polis : the political theory of Hannah Arendt and the political practice of Saul Alinsky

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Whoever you are, you may be a polis : the political theory of Hannah Arendt and the political practice of Saul Alinsky

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Title: Whoever you are, you may be a polis : the political theory of Hannah Arendt and the political practice of Saul Alinsky
Author: Littlewood, Jesse
Advisor: Beltran, Cristina
Department: Haverford College. Dept. of Political Science
Type: Thesis (B.A.)
Running Time: 354720 bytes187581 bytes
Issue Date: 2003
Abstract: Theoretically and tactically, Hannah Arendt and Saul Alinsky employ similar concepts in their conceptions of power as action-in-concert, utilizing the ability of citizens to create a political space (the polis), at anytime, in anyplace, and for Alinsky (but not Arendt), by anybody. Both are motivated by a similar concern: the perceived powerlessness of modern political subjects who, for whatever reason, do not participate in political actions. This work argues that it is with an Arendtian perspective on politics, action and the public realm that we can best understand the power, success, and failings of Alinsky's political practice. Conversely, the very fact that Alinsky was involved in political practice gives him insights into politics Arendt misses. I conclude that despite the vast differences in their personal and professional approaches to politics, a marriage of her theory and his practice is a particularly productive one, an analysis useful for activists and theorists alike.
Subject: Arendt, Hannah, 1906-1975
Subject: Alinsky, Saul David, 1909-1972
Subject: Political science
Subject: Community organization -- United States -- History
Terms of Use: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/us/
Permanent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10066/732

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Littlewood, Jesse. "Whoever you are, you may be a polis : the political theory of Hannah Arendt and the political practice of Saul Alinsky". 2003. Available electronically from http://hdl.handle.net/10066/732.

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