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A new book for those thoughtful readers, and not only lawyers or scholars of law and society, who are engaged in the issues of the day and want something other than “easy” answers from the right and left. Most issues of law and social policy can be understood better through a lens that balances rights and interests–and protects all of us while protecting each of us–says renowned communitarian sociologist Amitai Etzioni in his latest book.
Etzioni addresses hot-bed issues of terrorism, drone warfare, airport security and TSA scanners, government surveillance, internet privacy, norms of social disapproval and forgiveness, human rights, the failure of law and economics, and respect for ethnic cultural differences. He shares his perspective as one who fought in a resistance, and then later became a professor at Columbia University and GW. The perspective and his decades of academic research persuaded him that the answer to thorny legal and policy issues is found neither in unyielding devotion to individual rights at all costs nor to reflexive empowerment of the state in times of crisis and pain. The answer is in moral dialogs, respect for the basic right to live and to security, responsible checks on power, and a balancing of interests that all must be seen as legitimate in a world of pundits and partisans that want us to choose simply one right and ignore the others and the public cost. What good is the right to privacy if the right to live is sacrificed as the right-holder is blown out of the sky? If new technologies make it possible to conduct terrorism and crime without the law catching up? What happens when respect for one religious position means choosing among religious positions?
A collection of 15 trenchant essays drawn from the popular press and academic journals, yet accessible to a spectrum of readers who care about the hot issues of the day and see the complexity in them, this book takes a fresh look at important topics through a community-concerned lens. The frame gives contours and substance to today’s debates without offering the usual entrenched policy solutions of kneejerk partisans.
Etzioni asks such questions frankly, and on a variety of topics that matter. Rights carry responsibilities, and freedom and human rights must put living first–in a world that does not always concede that self-evident proposition.
It is book about law and society whose time has come. For many readers the social and legal notes Etzioni plays will finally sound in their register.
About the Author
The first University Professor at George Washington University and director of its Institute for Communitarian Policy Studies, Dr. Etzioni has written more than 30 books. After receiving his Ph.D. in Sociology from Berkeley in 1958, he served as a Professor of Sociology at Columbia University for 20 years; part of that time as chair of the department. He was a guest scholar at the Brookings Institution in 1978 before serving as a Senior Advisor to the White House from 1979-80. In 1980, Dr. Etzioni joined the faculty of GW. He was the president of the American Sociological Association in 1994-95, and in 1989-90 was the founding president of the International Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics. In 1990, he founded the Communitarian Network. He is a frequent contributor to journals, magazines, and radio and television commentary.
Available in eight digital formats, including Kindle store at Amazon; and Nook store at B&N. See it in many formats at Smashwords. Also sold at Diesel Books and at Google Play. And available directly on the iPad from Kindle and Nooks apps and at Apple iBooks. Also in ePub at Kobobooks and other retail outlets. At Kindle UK here.
Also in quality paperback from bookstores and retailers, and our own web order page. Its Amazon webpage is here. Ask for discounted bulk sales from Quid Pro Books.
ISBN (paperback): 1610270444 and ISBN-13 (paperback): 9781610270441
ISBN-13 (ePub): 9781610270427