on 12 February 1999
Taking an 'Introduction to US politics', I was surprised to see how much of de Tocqueville's(hence deToc) poignant observations in his masterpiece,'Democracy in America', are still valid today. It is unbelievable that this was written nearly one and a half century ago, which accurate analysis led my professor to say often during class, 'If deToc came back today...' I can't understand why many people around the world have love-or/and-hate feelings against the U.S. but do not understand the U.S. at all, and why so few seem to refer to deToc's 'Democracy in America.'Maybe, because this book is the vital key to understanding Uncle Sam's psyche that some wants it to be unknown as it is. Overall, a magnificient piece of analysis that would help anyone to understand the U.S. without taking all the pains of coming over like I did.
on 27 August 2009
The three star review is NOT for the text itself - Tocqueville writes insightfully and lucidly on a wide range of topics. If you are a casual reader looking to read Democracy in America, get this. It is cheap, and a good read which will help you look at politics in a new way. If you are getting this book for academic purposes however, do not buy this edition. It is an abridged version (I know it doesn't say this on the description or the cover, but look at the page count: 416, where the other editions come in at around 1000). Several passages, indeed several chapters, are missing, and the chapters are in the wrong order, so citing the book in essays is nightmarish. I found that I had to cross-reference it with a freely available but badly edited online version whenever I wanted to quote it.