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Theory and Practice

August 11, 2014

Yuval Levin, editor of National Affairs, takes on the relationship between theory and practice. We tend to think that political theories are dreamed up absent society and then played out in a society. But, drawing on Burke and Tocqueville, Levin postulates that “the ways in which we understand ourselves become the ways in which we live.” In other words, if a society has a theory, that theory becomes the end point rather than the starting point of political development. There is therefore a danger in theorizing, a danger so-called political theorists must understand.

More about: Jewish Political Thought