The Best 11 Books on Samuel P. Huntington
Now in his controversial new work, Who Are We?, Huntington focuses on an identity crisis closer to home as he examines the impact other civilizations and their values are having on our own country.
America was founded by British settlers who brought with them a distinct culture, says Huntington, including the English language, Protestant values, individualism, religious commitment, and respect for law. The waves of immigrants that later came to the United States gradually accepted these values and assimilated into America's Anglo-Protestant culture. More recently, however, our national identity has been eroded by the problems of assimilating massive numbers of primarily Hispanic immigrants and challenged by issues such as bilingualism, multiculturalism, the devaluation of citizenship, and the “denationalization” of American elites.
September 11 brought a revival of American patriotism and a renewal of American identity, but already there are signs that this revival is fading. Huntington argues the need for us to reassert the core values that make us Americans. Timely and thought-provoking, Who Are We? is an important book that is certain to shape our national conversation about who we are.
<p>Este libro es un cuidadoso estudio de las causas de los movimientos revolucionarios, de la intervención de los militares en la política, de las circunstancias que convierten a la reforma en un estímulo de la revolución, del papel de la corrupción, del dilema entre reforma y libertad en las sociedades tradicionales, de la función de los partidos políticos y de la actividad. Para concluir, presenta su propia teoría de la modernización política, un planteamiento que se ha convertido en uno de los análisis de la política comparativa más importantes de los últimos años.</p>
“This pioneering volume, examining as it does the relation between development and stability, is an interesting and exciting addition to the literature.”―American Political Science Review
“’Must’ reading for all those interested in comparative politics or in the study of development.”―Dankwart A. Rustow, Journal of International Affairs
In a classic work, Samuel P. Huntington challenges most of the old assumptions and ideas on the role of the military in society. Stressing the value of the military outlook for American national policy, Huntington has performed the distinctive task of developing a general theory of civil–military relations and subjecting it to rigorous historical analysis.
Part One presents the general theory of the "military profession," the "military mind," and civilian control. Huntington analyzes the rise of the military profession in western Europe in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and compares the civil–military relations of Germany and Japan between 1870 and 1945.
Part Two describes the two environmental constants of American civil–military relations, our liberal values and our conservative constitution, and then analyzes the evolution of American civil–military relations from 1789 down to 1940, focusing upon the emergence of the American military profession and the impact upon it of intellectual and political currents.
Huntington describes the revolution in American civil–military relations which took place during World War II when the military emerged from their shell, assumed the leadership of the war, and adopted the attitudes of a liberal society. Part Three continues with an analysis of the problems of American civil–military relations in the era of World War II and the Korean War: the political roles of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the difference in civil–military relations between the Truman and Eisenhower administrations, the role of Congress, and the organization and functioning of the Department of Defense. Huntington concludes that Americans should reassess their liberal values on the basis of a new understanding of the conservative realism of the professional military men.
This stunningly persuasive book examines the persistent, radical gap between the promise of American ideals and the performance of American politics. Samuel P. Huntington shows how Americans, throughout their history as a nation, have been united by the democratic creed of liberty, equality, and hostility to authority. At the same time he reveals how, inevitably, these ideals have been perennially frustrated through the institutions and hierarchies required to carry on the essential functions of governing a democratic society.
From this antagonism between the ideals of democracy and the realities of power have risen four great political upheavals in American history. Every third generation, Huntington argues, Americans have tried to reconstruct their institutions to make them more truly reflect deeply rooted national ideals. Moving from the clenched fists and mass demonstrations of the 1960s, to the moral outrage of the Progressive and Jacksonian Eras, back to the creative ideological fervor of the American Revolution, he incisively analyzes the dissenters’ objectives. All, he pungently writes, sought to remove the fundamental disharmony between the reality of government in America and the ideals on which the American nation was founded.
Huntington predicts that the tension between ideals and institutions is likely to increase in this country in the future. And he reminds us that the fate of liberty and democracy abroad is intrinsically linked to the strength of our power in world affairs. This brilliant and controversial analysis deserves to rank alongside the works of Tocqueville, Bryce, and Hofstadter and will become a classic commentary on the meaning of America.
Between 1974 and 1990 more than thirty countries in southern Europe, Latin America, East Asia, and Eastern Europe shifted from authoritarian to democratic systems of government. This global democratic revolution is probably the most important political trend in the late twentieth century. In The Third Wave, Samuel P. Huntington analyzes the causes and nature of these democratic transitions, evaluates the prospects for stability of the new democracies, and explores the possibility of more countries becoming democratic. The recent transitions, he argues, are the third major wave of democratization in the modem world. Each of the two previous waves was followed by a reverse wave in which some countries shifted back to authoritarian government. Using concrete examples, empirical evidence, and insightful analysis, Huntington provides neither a theory nor a history of the third wave, but an explanation of why and how it occurred.
Factors responsible for the democratic trend include the legitimacy dilemmas of authoritarian regimes; economic and social development; the changed role of the Catholic Church; the impact of the United States, the European Community, and the Soviet Union; and the "snowballing" phenomenon: change in one country stimulating change in others. Five key elite groups within and outside the nondemocratic regime played roles in shaping the various ways democratization occurred. Compromise was key to all democratizations, and elections and nonviolent tactics also were central. New democracies must deal with the "torturer problem" and the "praetorian problem" and attempt to develop democratic values and processes. Disillusionment with democracy, Huntington argues, is necessary to consolidating democracy. He concludes the book with an analysis of the political, economic, and cultural factors that will decide whether or not the third wave continues.
Several "Guidelines for Democratizers" offer specific, practical suggestions for initiating and carrying out reform. Huntington's emphasis on practical application makes this book a valuable tool for anyone engaged in the democratization process. At this volatile time in history, Huntington's assessment of the processes of democratization is indispensable to understanding the future of democracy in the world.