Liberalism Is Not Enough
Liberalism Is Not Enough
by

In this intellectual history of the fraught relationship between race and poverty in the 1960s, Liberalism Is Not Enough offers a sustained critique of the fundamental assumptions that structured thought and action on the postwar American left. Focusing on the figures associated with "Great Society liberalism" like Daniel Patrick Moynihan,… (more)

In this intellectual history of the fraught relationship between race and poverty in the 1960s, Liberalism Is Not Enough offers a sustained critique of the fundamental assumptions that structured thought and action on the postwar American left. Focusing on the figures associated with "Great Society liberalism" like Daniel Patrick Moynihan, David Riesman, and Arthur Schlesinger Jr., Robin Marie Averbeck argues that these thinkers helped construct policies that never truly attempted a serious attack on the sources of racial inequality and injustice.

In Averbeck's telling, the Great Society's most notable achievements--the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act--came only after unrelenting and unprecedented organizing by black Americans made changing the inequitable status quo politically necessary. And even so, the discourse about poverty created by liberals had inherently conservative qualities. Liberalism's historical relationship with capitalism shaped both the initial content of liberal scholarship on poverty and its ultimate usefulness to a resurgent conservative movement. This is not merely the history of a particular idea, but a critique of the fundamental assumptions that structured postwar American liberalism.

 

Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press (September 25, 2018)

Page count: 150 pages

Protection: DRM

Language: English

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