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The Future of American Democracy: A Former Congressman's Unconventional Analysis (2002)

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The Future of American Democracy:
A Former Congressman's Unconventional Analysis

    Glen Browder's book--The Future of American Democracy--is a provocative statement about the uncertain destiny of America's "Great Experiment."

     While his broad theme is positive and constructive, he believes that America is changing in ways that are important and unsettling for our traditional democratic system; and he speculates about whether we have reached the limits of our democratic destiny. 

     "America's 'Great Experiment' has indeed been a grand and glorious endeavor for over two hundred years," he says, "but our national democratic experiment also embodies principles and tendencies that inherently and continuously threaten American democracy."

     Particularly at the beginning of the Twenty-First Century, he believes that we are undergoing a democratic metamorphosis that, for better or worse, is transforming our nation and the world. "The critical question for contemporary America is how our nation--a people of growing cultural diversity, with increasingly divergent ideals, values, and principles of governance--can continue the collective pursuit of freedom, equality, and justice through the historic framework of representative democracy." 

     Perhaps, Browder speculates, we may have reached the limits of our democratic destiny. As he asks rhetorically at the beginning of his new book: "Is America dying?" 

    Reviewers have submitted very positive comments.  Former White House Chief of Staff Leon Panetta calls the book a challenging wake-up call: 

"Glen Browder's book is a wake-up call for our democracy. This nation was built on the principle that leadership would find the necessary consensus to advance the national interest. That principle has been lost in the current battles over power, parties and politics. This book challenges all of us to awake to the civil illness in our midst and restore the fundamental strength of our democracy."


Alan Ehrenhalt says that the book is well worth reading: 


 "Glen Browder is one of a rare breed in American politics: He genuinely combines serious scholarship and a commitment to public service. Browder is one of the most thoughtful and practical critics of the overnmental inertia that plagues us these days, and all of his recommendations are worth reading and paying attention to." 


Dr. Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia's Center for Governmental Studies, says students will appreciate the combination of theory and practicality: 


 "Rare is the academic who combines theoretical knowledge with practicality. Glen Browder is such a person. In this remarkable book, he challenges every citizen, especially the young, to think anew about America's democracy. Students will love it!" 


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The Future of American Democracy: A Former Congressman's Unconventional Analysis (2002) is available at:

University Press of America
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