The Comedy of Democracy

Framsida
Greenwood Publishing Group, 1996 - 203 sidor
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The notion of society and politics as drama has drawn much attention in recent years. Yet despite the heritage begun by Aristophanes, few students of politics and the social order have taken comedy and comic inquiry seriously. This book revives the Aristophanic notion of democracy as comedy. Herein the reader will find why and how different aspects of American democracy--public opinion, interest groups, the presidency, and so on--are comic. It is the author's contention that the comic perspective offers insight and understanding on the actual operation of democracy. And they invite all those who wish to understand why American democracy is so comic to join them in their inquiry.

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Wits End Taking Political Comedy Seriously
1
THE POLITICAL COMEDIES OF CITIZENSHIP
23
The Citizens Role in Democracy A Romantic Comedy
25
Candidates Campaigns and Voters Comedies of Farce and Humors in Electoral Politics
43
Voices of Public Opinion Comedies of Wit
63
Politics and the News Media A Comedy of Manners
83
THE POLITICAL COMEDIES OF POLICY MAKERS
105
Hell to the Chief Comedies of Character
107
Legislators Deliberate Political Comedies of the Situation
125
Political Bureaucracies Comedies of Errors and Intrigue
145
The Mystique of Courts and Judges Comedies of Ideas and Imagination
161
Exit Laughing
181
Selected Bibliography
195
Index
201
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Sida 63 - Men of all sorts take a pride to gird at me : the brain of this foolish-compounded clay, man, is not able to invent any thing that tends to laughter*, more than I invent, or is invented on me : I am not only witty in myself, but the cause that wit is in other men.
Sida 187 - Thou strok'st me and made much of me; wouldst give me Water with berries in't; and teach me how To name the bigger light, and how the less, That burn by day and night: and then I lov'd thee, And show'd thee all the qualities o' th' isle, The fresh springs, brine-pits, barren place, and fertile.
Sida 10 - The progress of humane enlightenment can go no further than in picturing people not as vicious but as mistaken. When you add that people are necessarily mistaken, that all people are exposed to situations in which they must act as fools, that every insight contains its own special kind of blindness,* you complete the comic circle, returning again to the lesson of humility that underlies great tragedy.
Sida 29 - They have not only commercial and manufacturing companies, in which all take part, but associations of a thousand other kinds, religious, moral, serious, futile, general or restricted, enormous or diminutive. The Americans make associations to give entertainments, to found seminaries, to build inns, to construct churches, to diffuse books, to send missionaries to the antipodes; in this manner they found hospitals, prisons, and schools.
Sida 50 - For Tippecanoe and Tyler too — Tippecanoe and Tyler too, And with them we'll beat little Van, Van, Van, Van is a used up man, And with them we'll beat little Van.
Sida 150 - There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions.
Sida 15 - Humor is the opposite of the heroic. The heroic promotes acceptance by magnification, making the hero's character as great as the situation he confronts, and fortifying the nonheroic individual vicariously, by identification with the hero; but humor reverses the process: it takes up the slack between the momentousness of the situation and the feebleness of those in the situation by dwarfing the situation.

Om författaren (1996)

JAMES E. COMBS is Adjunct Professor, Clinch Valley College, University of Virginia./e He was formerly Professor of Political Science at Valparaiso University and is the author or coauthor of 12 books, including The Political Pundits (Praeger, 1992).

DAN NIMMO is Visiting Scholar, Department of Political Science, Baylor University. He was formerly Professor of Communications at the University of Oklahoma and is the author or coauthor of 15 books, including The Political Pundits (Praeger, 1992).

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