By Andrew J. Polsky
Polsky offers a radical heritage of the production and continuation of the "therapeutic" method of "treating" marginal voters. whereas this heritage (and the critique that grows out of it) are in themselves attention-grabbing, the main attention-grabbing subject matter of the booklet is its research of the way coverage, even unsuccessful coverage, turns into institutional dogma. the matter that Polsky illuminates--the unwillingness of associations to alter path even if faced with mounds of facts that they should--has profound implications for politics.
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Extra info for The Rise of the Therapeutic State (The City in the Twenty-First Century Book Series)
6 Viewed from this moral economy perspective, urban elites were violating a public trust, choosing self-aggrandizement over the exercise of their responsibility toward the lower classes. A culture of consumption and promiscuous spending had taken hold in the metropolis. 7 Yet literally in the shadow of these abodes, the poor lived in squalor, unnoticed. Class isolation became more extreme after mid-century, when a general movement began among the more prosperous citydwellers to regroup into their own neighborhoods.
Later, unskilled industrial workers also struggled to organize MORAL ECONOMY AND PHILANTHROPY 29 themselves, though the surplus of labor pouring into the cities made them easily replaceable. At first labor agitation was episodic, undermined by business panics and episodes of high unemployment, but by the 1880s the turmoil seemed a constant by-product of the industrial order. 13 As the stirrings of the working class became more vigorous, bourgeois reformers in the larger cities began to fear that the destruction of the moral economy had brought America face-to-face with class warfare and an attack upon the sacred foundations of the liberal social order.
At first labor agitation was episodic, undermined by business panics and episodes of high unemployment, but by the 1880s the turmoil seemed a constant by-product of the industrial order. 13 As the stirrings of the working class became more vigorous, bourgeois reformers in the larger cities began to fear that the destruction of the moral economy had brought America face-to-face with class warfare and an attack upon the sacred foundations of the liberal social order. ”14 Marginality under industrial capitalism convinced community notables that they were confronted by “the social question”: in the wake of the erosion of older forms of authority, how was class conflict to be averted?