By Nina Eliasoph
Civic teams are stated to be the fount of democracy, yet those brilliant pics of yank existence demonstrate an interesting tradition of political avoidance. Nina Eliasoph followed volunteers, activists and game membership participants, hearing them talk--and no longer talk--politics, in various deepest and public settings. in contrast to interview-based experiences of political participation and civic tradition, heading off Politics indicates how electorate create and converse political principles in daily life, and the exertions it takes to supply apathy in a democracy.
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Extra resources for Avoiding Politics: How Americans Produce Apathy in Everyday Life
I mean 36 Avoiding politics it. " She apologized for sounding so cynical. With sympathy, Julie asked why she was so cynical. Interspersing her criticisms with many more apologies, Cora fumed at the politicians for putting so many measures on the ballot on the same issues, saying that she was so mad she voted " n o " on almost all twenty-eight ballot measures;8 she was cynical because, while she was calling people to get out the vote, she could not stop herself from thinking that people should not vote on issues that they know nothing about; cynical because there are people who make their entire livings as paid political consultants.
What is remarkable about this emphasis on fundraising is that, for most volunteers, it would have been much easier to pitch in money from their own pockets than to spend that enormous amount of time and effort on fundraisers. It might possibly have actually been cheaper for volunteers to donate their own money than to spend it on building elaborate concessions stands and other fundraising equipment. But just chipping in money would have missed their point. The implicit moral of a fundraiser was to show the community that common people care (Wuthnow 1991), not to show that only rich people can effectively care, or politically sophisticated people care.
Their point was that activity itself was a matter-of-fact way of demonstrating commitment. "We accomplish a lot": what "the frontstage" is for in volunteer groups What was missing was respect for discussion itself, willingness to debate about troubling issues that might not be resolved immediately; willingness to risk discouragement. This fear of talk itself became apparent to me in one of the first meetings of the Parent League I attended. Charles, the local NAACP representative, parent of a high schooler himself, had come to the meeting of mostly plump, pastel-clad parents wearing a black leather jacket and skinny black jeans.