Michael Oakeshott's Cold War liberalism

New York, NY: Palgrave-Macmillan (2015)
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Abstract

During the Cold War, political thinkers in the West debated the balance between the requirements of liberal democracy and national security. This debate is relevant to East Asia and especially to Korea, where an ideological-military standoff between a democracy and a totalitarian system persists. The thinkers often identified as "Cold War liberals"--Isaiah Berlin, Karl Popper, Raymond Aron, Friedrich Hayek, and Michael Oakeshott--are worth revisiting in this context. Of these, Oakeshott is the least well understood in East Asia and therefore particularly deserving of attention. His ideas about the limits of rationalism in politics, the irrelevance of conventional views of liberalism and conservatism, how constitutional democracy should be defined, and how it can be defended against various forms of anti-liberal politics are especially valuable. In this book, leading Oakeshott scholars from around the world explore these ideas and their implications for East Asia in ten illuminating and readable essays.

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