American Political Thought: Summer 2022 Issue

American Political Thought Journal: Summer 2022 Issue


American Political Thought: A Journal of Ideas, Institutions, and Culture, has recently published its Summer 2022 issue, which includes pieces by JMC scholars Noah Eber-Schmid and Zachary German.



>> Table of Contents <<


  1. “‘He Finds Us Wanting’: Morrison I. Swift and the Anarchism of William James,” Rosie DuBrin
  2. “American Jacobinism: The French Revolution, American Anti-Jacobinism, and Antidemocratic Anxieties,” Noah Eber-Schmid
  3. America Firstism from a Developmental Perspective,Justin Peck
  4. “‘America, You Great Unfinished Symphony’: Hamilton: An American Musical and the Challenge of Civic Education,” Zachary K. German

Book Reviews:

  1. The Powers of Dignity: The Black Political Philosophy of Frederick Douglass, by Nick Bromell,”Bernard R. Boxill
  2. The Politics of Black Joy: Zora Neale Hurston and Neo-abolitionism, by Lindsey Stewart,” Deborah G. Plant
  3. “The American Road Trip and American Political Thought, by Susan McWilliams Barndt,” Nolan Bennett
  4. Rescuing Socrates: How the Great Books Changed My Life and Why They Matter for a New Generation, by Roosevelt Montás,” Joel Schlosser
  5. Black-Minded: The Political Philosophy of Malcom X, by Michael Sawyer,” Tommy J. Curry
  6. White Freedom: The Racial History of an Idea, by Tyler Stovall,” Daniella Mascarenhas
  7. “Presidents, Populism, and the Crisis of Democracy, by William G. Howell and Terry M. Moe,” Graham G. Dodds



“American Jacobinism: The French Revolution, American Anti-Jacobinism, and Antidemocratic Anxieties,” Noah Eber-Schmid

“Scholars examining popular political discourse at the turn of the nineteenth century have often noted American anti-Jacobins’ and Federalists’ histrionic denunciations of the French Revolution. Looking to popular anti-Jacobin political writings of the period, I argue that the meaning of “Jacobin” and “Jacobinism” shifted from referring to the feared extremes of French revolutionary politics to the feared extremes of American popular democracy. The latter meaning, which I denote as “American Jacobinism,” formed as a response to a perceived threat to American sovereignty: the practices and claims of persons demanding to be included within the popular sovereign. By redeploying Jacobinism as a means of associating democratic actors and claims with extremist excesses, anti-Jacobin discourse demonstrates how political fear and ideological-linguistic manipulation are used to constitutively exclude persons from a sovereign “people,” obstructing democratic deliberation and delegitimating democratic claims.”

Click here to read the full piece >>



Noah Eber-Schmid is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science at Indiana University. He specializes in the history of Anglo-American political thought and contemporary democratic theory. His work applies contemporary democratic and critical theory to issues of political extremism, citizenship, and popular democracy in American political history and today.

Professor Eber-Schmid is a JMC-affiliated scholar.

Learn more about Noah Eber-Schmid >>



“‘America, You Great Unfinished Symphony’: Hamilton: An American Musical and the Challenge of Civic Education,” Zachary K. German

“With widespread, sustained popularity, Hamilton: An American Musical has become a significant resource for and cultural source of American civic education. The wide-ranging assessments of the Broadway phenomenon exemplify contemporary polarized debates over American history and civic education. However, this article argues that the musical’s account of the American founding has potential to address that polarization. Hamilton depicts America as a “great unfinished symphony,” offering an aspirational understanding of American principles and an appreciative account of the founding. Yet it acknowledges the distance between America’s principles and practices, encouraging further reflection by foregrounding the issue of race in American history. Finally, while some scholars criticize its “Great Man” approach to history, the musical invites its audience to consider the role of leaders and the importance of their character in composing the “great unfinished symphony” that is America.”

Click here to read the full piece >>



Zachary K. German is an Assistant Professor in the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership at Arizona State University, where he teaches American political thought and constitutionalism. His research includes work on American political thought, constitutional interpretation, statesmanship, politics and religion, politics and culture, Christian political thought, Montesquieu, and Tocqueville. His current book project examines statesmanship in the thought of Montesquieu, the Federalists, and the Anti-Federalists, concerning the relationship between institutional design, culture, and the character of a people. He is a founding faculty member of the new School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership at ASU.

Professor German is a JMC fellow.

Learn more about Zachary K. German >>



American Political Thought journal coverAmerican Political Thought: A Journal of Ideas, Institutions, and Culture is a JMC supported journal that bridges the gap between historical, empirical, and theoretical research. It is the only journal dedicated exclusively to the study of American political thought. Interdisciplinary in scope, APT features research by political scientists, historians, literary scholars, economists, and philosophers who study the foundation of the American political tradition. Research explores key political concepts such as democracy, constitutionalism, equality, liberty, citizenship, political identity, and the role of the state.

Click here to learn more about American Political Thought >>



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