27 found

Year:

  1.  11
    Can the EU Stop Eastern Europe's Illiberal Turn?Hilary Appel - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):255-266.
    ABSTRACT The EU’s activation of Article 7 procedures against Hungary and Poland signals that it is beginning to take seriously the illiberal turn in Central Europe. However, the likelihood that the EU can restrain populist and illiberal tendencies in Hungary and Poland in the near future is slim. Despite the efficacy of the EU and other international organizations in promoting liberalism in these countries in the past, similar efforts are hobbled by a lack of political will and by significant bureaucratic (...)
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  2.  12
    Populism and Presidential Representation.Jeremy D. Bailey - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):267-277.
    ABSTRACT Populism raises questions about the extent to which public opinion should be a legitimate foundation for executive power. In the United States, it is often thought, such a foundation was established at the beginning of the twentieth century through the creation of a newly “representative” modern presidency. This new presidency, it is held, acts as an agent of populist majorities to undermine constitutional and legal norms. In fact, however, the argument for presidential representation is a long-standing element of politics (...)
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  3.  3
    Beyond Social Science Naturalism: The Case for Ecumenical Interpretivism.Cornel Ban - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):454-461.
    ABSTRACT The epistemological and methodological wars that bedevil social science often pit those who follow in the footsteps of natural science and those who favor a more holistic, interpretive approach. Into this war-torn landscape, Mark Bevir and Jason Blakley have dropped a plea for interpretive social science that will surely serve as a touchstone for years to come. However, their anti-naturalism is of the methodologically ecumenical kind, with the qualitative toolkit cohabiting with mass surveys, large-N statistics, and other quantitative methods (...)
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  4.  10
    Populism in America: Christopher Lasch, Bell Hooks, and the Persistence of Democratic Possibility.Will Barndt - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):278-299.
    ABSTRACT Debates about “populism” in recent years have used thin understandings of the term, which conceal theoretically richer possibilities. This essay explores the thicker understanding of populism developed in Christopher Lasch’s The True and Only Heaven and bell hooks’s belonging. In so doing, the essay suggests other roads forward for arguments about populism in America.
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  5.  11
    The Plague of Bannonism.Ronald Beiner - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):300-314.
    ABSTRACT Donald Trump’s thinking is too erratic and scattershot to count as a real system of ideas. Steve Bannon’s version of populism seems significantly more focused, more self-conscious, and hence more open to theory-based critical analysis, which this paper attempts to provide. That is not at all to say, however, that Bannon’s ideas achieve intellectual coherence or consistency. Close examination of the defining components of his worldview suggest the opposite. Still, engagement with contemporary right-populism cannot, or should not, avoid Bannon (...)
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  6.  2
    Naturalism and Its Inadvertent Defenders.Mark Bevir & Jason Blakely - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):489-501.
    ABSTRACT The interpretive turn in the social sciences, although much discussed, has effectively stalled and even begun to backslide. With the publication of Interpretive Social Science: An Anti-Naturalist Approach, we provide a systematic defense of interpretive inquiry intended to help reinvigorate this mode of study across the human sciences. This defense, unfortunately, needs to be deployed not only against social scientists who unwittingly adopt naturalistic philosophical assumptions, but against interpretivist fellow travelers such as Michel Foucault, who occasionally do the same (...)
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  7.  5
    Populists as Technocrats.Jeffrey Friedman - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):315-376.
    ABSTRACT An intellectually charitable understanding of populism might begin by recognizing that, since populist citizens tend to be politically uninformed and lacking in higher education, populist ideas are likely to be inarticulate reproductions of the tacit assumptions undergirding non-populist or “mainstream” culture rather than stemming from explicit theoretical constructs, such as an apotheosis of the unity or the will of “the people.” What features of our ambient culture, then, could explain the simplistic and combative approach that populists seem to take (...)
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  8.  7
    Liberal Democracy, National Identity Boundaries, and Populist Entry Points.Sara Wallace Goodman - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):377-388.
    ABSTRACT The politics of populism is the politics of belonging. It reflects a deep challenge to the liberal democratic state, which attempts to maintain social boundaries but also allow immigration. Boundaries—established through citizenship and norms of belonging—must be both coherent and malleable. Changes to boundaries become sites of contestation for exclusionary populists in the putative interest of “legitimate” citizens. Populism is an inevitable response to liberal democratic adjustment; any liberal democracy that redefines citizenship opens itself to populist challenge.
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  9.  3
    Brexit, Positional Populism, and the Declining Appeal of Valence Politics.Colin Hay & Cyril Benoît - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):389-404.
    ABSTRACT A factor that may account for the largely unanticipated victory of Brexit in 2016 is the difference in engagement, mobilization, and, ultimately, turnout between those for whom the question of Brexit was a valence issue and those for whom it was a positional issue. The declining appeal of valence politics may reveal a phenomenon that goes beyond Brexit and Britain: a change in the nature and character of contemporary electoral competition that may help to explain the newly resurgent populism (...)
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  10.  4
    Trump: New Populist or Old Democrat?Stephanie Muravchik & Jon A. Shields - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):405-419.
    ABSTRACT Donald Trump’s victory depended on the defection of hundreds of longstanding Democratic communities. Trump appealed to these communities partly because he behaves like some of their most beloved politicians. Like the president, these politicians are brazen, thin skinned, nepotistic, and offer an older, boss-centered vision of politics. Trump—the anti-establishment outsider—appealed to voters in these communities because he resembles the local insiders. This appeal widens an old fault line inside the Democratic Party.
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  11.  1
    The Border Wall as a Populist Challenge.Paulina Ochoa Espejo - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):420-439.
    ABSTRACT Most critics of the U.S.-Mexico border wall assume that it represents the xenophobic nationalism typical of right populism. However, the populist message of exclusion is directed not at migrants but at the liberal democrats who compose the traditional mainstream of politics. The wall’s populist message is meant to expose a contradiction: liberal democrats do not know how to reconcile borders with their official commitment to universal inclusion. Right populism and left populism, too exploit this contradiction. Liberal democracy could effectively (...)
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  12.  1
    Scholarly Reflexivity, Methodological Practice, and Bevir and Blakely's Anti-Naturalism.Peregrine Schwartz-Shea - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):462-480.
    ABSTRACT Interpretive social science consists of researchers’ interpretations of actors’ interpretations. Bevir and Blakely’s anti-naturalist approach truncates this double hermeneutic, neglecting how researcher identity affects knowledge-making. Moreover, by disappearing methodology and treating methods as neutral tools, the authors miss the significance of methodological practice. In their treatment, an anti-naturalist philosophy is sufficient to produce high-quality interpretive research, even when the methods used are those of large-N statistics or other variables-based approaches. Unfortunately, then, the book is unlikely to create more space (...)
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  13.  1
    Anti-Naturalism and Structure in Interpretive Social Science.Lisa Wedeen - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):481-488.
    ABSTRACT Mark Bevir and Jason Blakely’s Interpretive Social Science: An Anti-Naturalist Approach successfully points out the problems with various forms of philosophical naturalism, demonstrating how essentialism, synchrony, and an effort to establish lawlike generalizations bedevil social science on both sides of the interpretive/positivist divide. The authors do an excellent job of identifying the philosophical roots and debates that are tied to the interpretive turn, while offering a thought-provoking critique of Michel Foucault. However, Bevir and Blakely overstate the degree to which (...)
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  14.  4
    Of Scribes and Tribes: Progressive Politics and the Populist Challenge.Bernard Yack - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (3-4):440-453.
    ABSTRACT What has made progressives—self-styled champions of the people—the principal targets of populist resentment in contemporary politics? Perhaps it is progressives’ ambivalence about democracy, not merely the racist, sexist and nationalist passions that progressives prefer to blame. Indeed, one of the reasons that progressives find themselves under attack as out-of-touch elitists may be that they are out of touch with the nature and extent of their elitism. So long as progressives remain committed to enlightening the people as well as empowering (...)
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  15.  8
    History Against Psychology in the Thought of R. G. Collingwood.Guive Assadi - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (2):135-159.
    ABSTRACTR. G. Collingwood is mostly remembered for his theory that historical understanding consists in re-enacting the thoughts of the historical figure whom one is studying. His first recognizable expression of this view followed from an argument about the emptiness of psychological interpretations of religion, and throughout his career Collingwood offered history as re-enactment as an alternative to psychology. Over time, his argument that the psychology of religion could not be relevant to the veracity of religious beliefs was supplanted by the (...)
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  16.  10
    The Hermeneutics of Policing: An Analysis of Law and Order Technocracy.Jason Blakely - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (2):160-178.
    ABSTRACTContemporary American policing practices are marked by increasingly top-down, racialized, militarized, and pseudo-scientific features. Social scientists have played a central role in creating this political situation: social-scientific advocates of “law and order,” far from providing a value-neutral description of social reality, appear instead to have contributed to the creation of a peculiarly modern form of power.
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  17.  48
    Evidence-Based Policy: The Tension Between the Epistemic and the Normative.Donal Khosrowi & Julian Reiss - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (2):179-197.
    Acceding to the demand that public policy should be based on “the best available evidence” can come at significant moral cost. Important policy questions cannot be addressed using “the best available evidence” as defined by the evidence-based policy paradigm; the paradigm can change the meaning of questions so that they can be addressed using the preferred kind of evidence; and important evidence that does not meet the standard defined by the paradigm can get ignored. We illustrate these problems in three (...)
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  18.  6
    The Timelessly Rhetorical Presidency: Reply to Zug.Anne C. Pluta - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (2):230-241.
    ABSTRACTCharles U. Zug, following Jeffrey Tulis’s The Rhetorical Presidency, argues that the original design of the Constitution constrained presidents from cultivating a relationship with the American public. In reality, though, presidents are opportunistic politicians who always look for new ways to reach the public in order to gain political advantage and nurture their relationship with the people. In this effort they have often made use of new communication technologies, such that what may look like radical twentieth-century departures from previous understandings (...)
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  19.  9
    The Changing Nature of Mass Belief Systems: The Rise of Concept and Policy Ideologues.Martin P. Wattenberg - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (2):198-229.
    ABSTRACTThe proportion of the American electorate that is “constrained” by ideology has risen dramatically since Philip E. Converse suggested, in the early 1960s, that ideology is the province of only a small fraction of the mass public. In part, the rise of ideological voters has been obscured by the tendency of scholars after Converse to equate them with those who use terms referring to ideological concepts, such as liberal and conservative, in open-ended interviews. These “concept ideologues,” however, are not the (...)
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  20.  6
    Diagnosing the Blinding Effects of Trumpism: Rejoinder to Pluta.Charles U. Zug - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (2):242-254.
    ABSTRACTAnne C. Pluta’s reply to my critique perpetuates the errors that undermined the article I criticized. Pluta dismisses out of hand my suggestion that her mistakes are the result of the particular lens through which she and much of the political science community view the American presidency. Yet this suggestion has the merit of explaining why she contends that piling up nineteenth-century instances of presidential public “speech” undermines Jeffrey Tulis’s contention that the nature of presidential speech changed decisively at the (...)
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  21.  21
    Democracy and the Epistemic Limits of Markets.Kevin J. Elliott - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (1):1-25.
    ABSTRACTA recent line of argument insists that replacing democracy with markets would improve social decision making due to markets’ superior use of knowledge. These arguments are flawed by unrealistic assumptions, unfair comparisons, and a neglect of the epistemic limits of markets. In reality, the epistemic advantages of markets over democracy are circumscribed and often illusory. A recognition of markets’ epistemic limits can, however, provide guidance for designing institutions in ways that capture the advantages of both.
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  22.  7
    Ideas, Ideology, and the Roots of the Islamic State.Mohammad Fadel - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (1):83-94.
    ABSTRACTThe ideals that gave rise to Daesh are not so much those of pre-modern Sunni Islam, including Salafism, as they are the ideals that post-colonial Arab states have propagated since the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. In contravention to long-established ideals of Islamic law, post-colonial Arab states have attempted to legitimate their own despotisms through a formal commitment to a certain kind of Islamic normativity. Inasmuch as Islam provides a ready political discourse to resist despotism, it is unsurprising that pan-Arab (...)
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  23.  69
    Against Epistocracy.Paul Gunn - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (1):26-82.
    ABSTRACTIn Against Democracy, Jason Brennan argues that public ignorance undermines the legitimacy of democracy because, to the extent that ignorant voters make bad policy choices, they harm their own and one another’s interests. The solution, he thinks, is epistocracy, which would leave policy decisions largely in the hands of social-scientific experts or voters who pass tests of political knowledge. However, Brennan fails to explain why we should think that these putative experts are sufficiently knowledgeable to avoid making errors as damaging (...)
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  24.  11
    Dangerous Ideas: The Force of Ideology and Personality in Driving Radicalization.Steffen Hertog - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (1):95-101.
    ABSTRACTGraeme Wood’s The Way of the Strangers gets as close as is humanly possible to an ethnography of recruiters and sympathizers of the Islamic State. Contrary to much writing on radical Islamism, Wood convincingly shows that the Islamic State’s ideas—rooted in a literalist reading of ancient Islamic sources—are central in motivating many of the movement’s followers. His accounts of individual adherents also suggests, however, that ideas are not the only factor, as certain personality traits influence who is attracted to radical (...)
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  25.  21
    Do Religious Ideas Cause Violence?Mark Juergensmeyer - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (1):102-112.
    ABSTRACTSocial science seldom takes religion seriously. Graeme Wood shows the folly of this neglect in The Way of the Strangers, his portrayal of the apocalyptic religious ideas held by some of the most ardent ISIS followers. The actions and devotion of members of the Islamic State cannot be understood without grasping what Wood is telling us. Still, a central question remains: Do these religious ideas inevitably lead to violence? Here the jury is still out, since a focus solely on religion, (...)
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  26.  12
    Knowing and Not Knowing ISIS.J. Judd Owen - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (1):113-122.
    ABSTRACTGraeme Wood’s The Way of the Strangers suggests that many scholars have denied or downplayed the Islamic State’s own account of its emphatically religious foundation. This tendency is heir to the Enlightenment strategy of defanging illiberal religion by claiming that only religions conforming to liberal principles are genuinely religious—raising anew questions that arose at the dawn of liberalism, in the wake of the Wars of Religion.
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  27.  8
    ISIS and Ideology: Reply to Fadel, Hertog, Juergensmeyer, and Owen.Graeme Wood - 2019 - Critical Review 31 (1):123-134.
    ABSTRACTMy critics and I agree that ideology is understudied, though I think it is the most important factor while they reserve a lesser role for it. Hertog’s analysis of personality traits is suggestive and valuable, though it illuminates a path that leads to the Islamic State's ideology rather than to its violence. Owen correctly identifies the challenge the Islamic State – and other forms of revivalist religion – pose for Lockean toleration. Fadel's swerve toward an “ideology” of Arab despotism is (...)
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