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||Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America main page
Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
In May of 1831, twenty-six year-old Alexis de Tocqueville landed in
Newport, Rhode Island, then a city of fewer than 16,000 residents. From
there he began a ten-month journey across America. Tocqueville sought to
answer the political riddle of the era: Why was it that democracy flourished in America? What was the secret of American success, and could it be brought home to France, where Tocqueville’s own aristocratic family had been jailed during the French revolution of 1789. Tocqueville’s
observations on the American experiment in Democracy, and his predictions
for its future, are considered among the most insightful and prophetic ever
recorded. Can we still learn something about democracy from a twenty-six-year-old, French aristocrat who visited America a hundred and seventy years ago?
Read the full transcript
Harvard University professor of government; author and translator of the most recent English edition of Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Originally Aired: 10/4/2001
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Ford’s Fundamentals, Part Two
Ford’s Fundamentals, Part one
Civil Rights, Then and Now, Part One
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