Profound analysis of potential ways to better balance governmental power and the freedom of the people.
Is it possible to bridge the gap between the state's secrecy and the people who are ruled? Social and Political Bonds argues that mediation between people and purposes, parts and wholes, voluntariness and coercion, not only can but must occur in a fair society and outlines a range of strategies that can be used to join seemingly irreconcilable social and political contexts.
Warning specifically against official moralistic rhetoric, the ignoring of civic demands, and hidden acts of power by anonymous governmental bureaucracies and lobbyists, F.M. Barnard uses an approach that blurs the boundaries of specialized fields of study in order to recognize the degree to which individual choice influences political force. He also shows how any attempt to achieve a balance between the state and society requires a developed political judgment and a measured view of what can be politically attained and demanded. A masterfully clear work that synthesizes centuries of political theory, Social and Political Bonds makes a powerful and well-reasoned case for the benefits of civic involvement and governmental cooperation.