Defending Identity

Defending Identity : Its Indispensable Role in Protecting Democracy

3.78 (87 ratings by Goodreads)

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Description

From the bestselling author of "The Case for Democracy", a piercing examination of the dominant force that shapes political interactions.Who is better prepared to confront challenges and defend principles in a volatile modern world? Those with strong national, religious, ethnic or tribal identities who accept democracy, or democrats who renounce identity as a kind of divisive prejudice?Natan Sharansky, building on his personal experience as a dissident, argues that valueless cosmopolitanism, even in democracies, is dangerous. Better to have hostile identities framed by democracy than democrats indifferent to identity.In a vigorous, insightful challenge to the left and right alike, Natan Sharansky, as he has proved repeatedly, is at the leading edge of the issues that frame our times.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 304 pages
  • 142 x 212 x 30mm | 439.98g
  • PublicAffairs,U.S.
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 158648513X
  • 9781586485139
  • 2,560,667

Review quote

"Washington Times," July, 25, 2008 "The Democratic Party's hopeful savior, Barack Obama, has made it clear that he will draw a sharp distinction between himself and John McCain through his approach to foreign policy and his emphasis on diplomacy and multi-nationalism. His commitment to restoring America's image and withdrawing from Iraq makes him the preferred candidate for much of Western Europe, and much of the world for that matter. However, Barack Obama's lead in world public opinion polls is something John McCain should highlight and embrace, rather than resist. If Mr. McCain finds this strategy flawed, he should read Natan Sharansky's latest book, "Defending Identity," which discusses the crucial distinctions between the United States and much of the world, including the European bloc. Mr. Sharansky, a Jewish former Soviet dissident who spent years in the gulags for trying to hold the Soviet Union accountable to its international human-rights commitments, explains as his central thesis that identity without democracy is totalitarianism, but democracy without identification to the larger community is weak and doomed to fail." "Washington Times," July, 25, 2008
"The Democratic Party's hopeful savior, Barack Obama, has made it clear that he will draw a sharp distinction between himself and John McCain through his approach to foreign policy and his emphasis on diplomacy and multi-nationalism. His commitment to restoring America's image and withdrawing from Iraq makes him the preferred candidate for much of Western Europe, and much of the world for that matter. However, Barack Obama's lead in world public opinion polls is something John McCain should highlight and embrace, rather than resist.If Mr. McCain finds this strategy flawed, he should read Natan Sharansky's latest book, "Defending Identity," which discusses the crucial distinctions between the United States and much of the world, including the European bloc. Mr. Sharansky, a Jewish former Soviet dissident who spent years in the gulags for trying to hold the Soviet Union accountable to its international human-rights commitments, explains as his central thesis that identity without democracy is totalitarianism, but democracy without identification to the larger community is weak and doomed to fail." "Jerusalem Post," June 30, 2008
"Fortunately, one of the greatest Jewish heroes alive today has jumped into this battle, armed with his usual weapons - wit, iconoclasm, erudition and courage. Having survived Soviet prisons, having survived years in Israeli politics with his reputation for independence and integrity intact, Natan Sharansky is now ready to lead the charge against those who are deluding themselves by denuding themselves...This twist makes Sharansky's argument fresh, powerful, compelling, and yes, subversive. Rather than joining the Jewish woe-is-me crowd lamenting that particularist Judaism cannot survive America's universalizing embrace, Sharansky fears that America, Europe and the West cannot survive modernity's universalizing embrace. Sharansky endorses a strong Jewish identity, a vital American identity, a vigorous Israeli identity, a proud Western identity, to preserve democracy... Sharansky's book should make us appreciate how lucky we are as Jews to be a part of such an inspiring story."
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About Natan Sharansky

Natan Sharansky, a former Soviet dissident, political prisoner and human rights icon, has spent his life championing democracy and freedom. In 1977 he was arrested by the KGB for his activism and his support for Soviet Jews' demands to emigrate to Israel and imprisoned for nine years. The author of the international bestselling The Case for Democracy, Sharansky has served as a senior minister in the Israeli government, and now heads a foundation.
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Rating details

87 ratings
3.78 out of 5 stars
5 31% (27)
4 32% (28)
3 24% (21)
2 9% (8)
1 3% (3)
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