John Dewey

The global public and its problems

By John Narayan

John Dewey


  • Hardcover

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-4187-3
  • Pages: 192
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £21.00
  • Published Date: May 2019
  • BIC Category: Politics, United States of America, USA, Globalization, Political science & theory, Social & political philosophy, POLITICAL SCIENCE / History & Theory, PHILOSOPHY / Political, Society & social sciences / Globalization, Society & social sciences / Political science & theory, Humanities / Social & political philosophy
  • Series: Theory for a Global Age


This book argues that John Dewey should be read not as a 'local' American thinker but rather as a philosopher of globalisation. Although his work is rooted in late-nineteenth and early twentieth century America, its principal concern is with the role of the United States in a globalised world. Tracing Dewey's emergence as a global democrat through an examination of his work from The Public and Its Problems (1927) onward, the book shows how he sets out an evolutionary form of global and national democracy, one that has not been fully appreciated even by contemporary scholars of pragmatism. In returning to and recovering this neglected dimension of Dewey's political philosophy, the book highlights how his insights about globalisation and democracy can inform present theoretical debates.


'This carefully crafted response to Dewey's critics and supporters alike presents a radical Dewey appropriate for our own time of massive economic disparity and emerging global publics. The Dewey presented here takes the measure of relations between bourgeois democracy and global democracies, between liberal capitalism and social democracy. Narayan's Dewey is edgy and exciting.'
Larry A. Hickman, Director of the Center for Dewey Studies, Southern Illinois University Carbondale, USA

'John Narayan's incisive, timely work challenges us to rethink the meaning and possibility of democracy in today's global context. Using John Dewey's ideas about democratic publics, the book probes the potentialities and limits of democracy in a globalized world rife with sharp economic inequalities, intense racial, ethnic, and religious splits, and strong anti-democratic currents. His reconstructive interpretation outlines an alternative to the dominant neoliberal regime.'
Robert J. Antonio, Professor of Sociology, University of Kansas, USA

'This is an excellent and novel treatment of Dewey's political thought.'
P. R. Babbitt, Southern Arkansas University, Choice 01/08/2016


1 Introducing the enigma of global democracy
2 Creative democracy
3 The global democrat
4 Twenty-first century creative democracy
5 Conclusion: Democracy and global justice


John Narayan is Research Fellow in Sociology at the University of Warwick, UK

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