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The Politics of Pragmatism

Peter Schwartz

Presented at: TJS 1987

Date: Aug 02, 1987

Why has the political revolt of the right, begun in the late 1970's, fizzled into nonexistence? Why is the eight-year legacy of the Reagan Administration––the last best hope of the conservatives––trillion dollar annual budgets? Is liberalism poised for a rebirth? Did it ever really die? These two lectures analyze the ideas of leading conservative and liberal thinkers. They show how pragmatism is the increasingly dominant element in political theory today, as evidenced by such phenomena as supply-side economics on the right and "neoliberalism" on the left. And they examine why the welfare state––the paradigm of pragmatism––has become the unchallenged ideal of both liberalism and conservatism.


Parts: 2

Handout: none


  • e-Store, 2012 (En) - 181 mins
  • Tape, 1987 (En)