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Deparochializing Political Theory


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Table of Contents

1. Introduction. The practice of deparochializing political theory Melissa S. Williams; 2. Deparochializing political theory and beyond: a dialogue approach to comparative political thought James Tully; 3. Recentering political theory, revisited: on mobile locality, general applicability, and the future of comparative political theory Leigh K. Jenco; 4. A decentralized republic of virtue: true way learning in the Southern Song period and beyond Youngmin Kim; 5. Deparochializing political theory from the Far Eastern Province Ken Tsutsumibayashi; 6. Is popular sovereignty a useful myth? Joseph Chan and Franz Mang; 7. Authoritarian and democratic pathways to meritocracy in China Baogang He and Mark E. Warren; 8. Deparochializing democratic theory Melissa S. Williams; 9. Teaching comparative political thought: joys, pitfalls, strategies, significance Stephen Salkever; 10. Teaching philosophy and political thought in Southeast Asia Terry Nardin; 11. Why globalize the curriculum? Duncan Ivison.

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Leading political theorists demonstrate the transformative potential of de-centering Western traditions in the field of political theory.

About the Author

Melissa S. Williams is Professor of Political Science at the University of Toronto and Vice President of the American Political Science Association.


'This path-breaking book addresses the urgent problem of bringing diverse human ideas about legitimate political order into conversation with one another. The authors disagree fruitfully about precisely where to go and how to get there. Yet all of these essays brim with insight. The authors explore the concept of 'reciprocal elucidation', the surprising but convincing protection of claims to universalism, a possible demolition of the normative value of popular sovereignty, the possible globalization of a peasant ritual, a normative embedding of meritocracy in authoritarian and democratic regimes, how to teach, how to think – far too many insights to name here. The world needs this movement and every political theorist needs to read this book.' Jane Mansbridge, Harvard University, Massachusetts

'While the most pressing political challenges of our time are of a global nature, we lack a truly transnational political language and imagination to approach them. Deparochializing Political Theory is essential to overcoming this lacuna. This volume brings together leading scholars to engage in an exemplary dialogic quest for understanding one's own and other modes of political thought while avoiding cultural reification and imposition.' Rainer Forst, Goethe University Frankfurt

'This outstanding volume ranges from exciting new departures to thoughtful reflections on lifetimes of scholarship. Williams convincingly illustrates that there is no one answer or route to practicing comparative political theory; what we need right now is not a single road map, but a range of options and vigorous debate.' Stephen C. Angle, Wesleyan University, Connecticut

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