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Loyalty in America John H. Schaar

Loyalty in America

John H. Schaar

Published April 29th 1982
ISBN : 9780313234163
Hardcover
227 pages
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 About the Book 

Loyalty is a grand and protean word, a word to conjure with. Moralists praise it, politicians plead for it, philosophers analyze it. Loyalty is among the noblest of virtues, as any Boy Scout knows, and disloyalty the basest of crimes.…Loyalty hasMoreLoyalty is a grand and protean word, a word to conjure with. Moralists praise it, politicians plead for it, philosophers analyze it. Loyalty is among the noblest of virtues, as any Boy Scout knows, and disloyalty the basest of crimes.…Loyalty has become a pawn in the political struggle. When that fate overtakes any word, its later career is bound to be devious. …[S]ome men have arrogated authority to assess the loyalty of their fellows, and many outrages have been excused in the name of loyalty. What those events reflect is public bewilderment on matters concerning the rights and obligations of citizens. The time is appropriate for an appraisal of the problem of loyalty.…The project divides into a number of distinct though related parts. First there is a brief introduction to the psychology and sociology of loyalty. Following that comes a more extensive discussion of political loyalty, including an analysis of the relations between loyalty and a few other concepts, and a description of the diverse forms loyalty assumes under different political regimes. There follows an excursion into the historical development of political loyalty in the United States.After this background has been sketched in, the study moves forward to consider some of the chief factors determining the current stress on loyalty. Then the chief concepts of loyalty currently operative in the federal loyalty program are examined. Finally, these concepts are checked against the conditions that were supposed to have generated the current concern with loyalty, thereby making it possible to probe the relations between ideas and sociological determinants, to compare what is new with what is old, and to draw conclusions about the nature and significance of the role of loyalty in the recent period.-- from the Preface