Politics, Language, and Time: Essays on Political Thought and History

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University of Chicago Press, Jan 15, 1989 - Political Science - 290 pages
In his first essay, "Languages and Their Implications," J. G. A. Pocock announces the emergence of the history of political thought as a discipline apart from political philosophy. Traditionally, "history" of political thought has meant a chronological ordering of intellectual systems without attention to political languages; but it is through the study of those languages and of their changes, Pocock claims, that political thought will at last be studied historically.

Pocock argues that the solution has already been approached by, first, the linguistic philosophers, with their emphasis on the importance of language study to understanding human thought, and, second, by Thomas Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, with its notion of controlling intellectual paradigms. Those paradigms within and through which the scientist organizes his intellectual enterprise may well be seen as analogous to the worlds of political discourse in which political problems are posed and political solutions are proffered. Using this notion of successive paradigms, Pocock demonstrates its effectiveness by analyzing a wide range of subjects, from ancient Chinese philosophy to Machiavelli, Hobbes, and Burke.
 

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Contents

AN ESSAY ON THE APPARENT
42
CIVIC HUMANISM AND ITS ROLE IN ANGLOAMERICAN
80
MACHIAVELLI HARRINGTON AND ENGLISH POLITICAL IDE
104
TIME HISTORY AND ESCHATOLOGY IN THE THOUGHT
148
A PROBLEM
202
AN ESSAY ON TRADI
233
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About the author (1989)

J. G. A. Pocock is the Harry C. Black Professor of History at the Johns Hopkins University. Among his many books are The Ancient Constitution and the Federal Law and Virtue, Commerce, and History.

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