Civic virtue and social reform

Frederick Powell

in The politics of civil society

Published by Policy Press

Published in print June 2007 | ISBN: 9781861347640
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303947 | DOI:
Civic virtue and social reform

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This chapter examines the role of civic virtue in shaping social reform, the cradle of social policy as a discipline, and the political Zeitgeist that inspired the welfare state. It discusses the great struggle which took place between Marxists attempting to create a new subjectivity through the revolutionising of the working class, and anti-Marxists committed to social reform. It notes that the politics of welfare is a modern utopian narrative of an attempt to create a more virtuous society. It explains how, inherent in the emerging welfare state, was a fusion between state and society. It explains that utopian ideals of human welfare were turned on their head in the new dystopian regimes that evolved into totalitarian societies based on fear. It adds that democracy and civil society were eliminated.

Keywords: civic virtue; social reform; social policy; welfare state; Marxists; anti-Marxists; utopian ideals; human welfare; democracy

Chapter.  9057 words. 

Subjects: Organizations

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