The phrase “the end of ideology” is becoming a catchword which sums up a major tendency of our time. Daniel Bell chose it as the title for his recently published collection of essays on American politics and culture. Edward Shils in his book on McCarthyism and in several later essays contrasts the “ideological politics” which he hopes and believes to be declining in the West with what he calls “the politics of civility.” Seymour Martin Lipset’s book Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics might have been called with equal appropriateness “The End of Political Man,” considering that Lipset is largely concerned with documenting the attenuation of the class struggle in Western countries and that the term “political man” unavoidably suggests a militant partisan. On the more rarefied level of political philosophy and covering a far longer historical time-span—from the Enlightenment to the present day—Judith Shklar pursues the same theme in her book After Utopia: The Decline of Political Faith.
All of these writers, with the partial exception of Miss Shklar, tend to favor the development they describe, although their precise attitudes ...
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