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SAGE Publications

Cover Image: The Good Citizen: How a Younger Generation Is Reshaping American Politics, Revised Edition
  • Date: 12/19/2008
  • Format: Print Paperback
  • Price: $32.00
  • ISBN: 978-1-60426-556-9
  • Pages: 200
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The Good Citizen: How a Younger Generation Is Reshaping American Politics, Revised Edition
Russell J. Dalton, University of California, Irvine


ABOUT THE REVISED EDITION

Before the Iowa caucuses, nearly all political analysts believed that the Obama campaign strategy of targeting young Americans was doomed to failure. His election win proved the detractors wrong.


In a new epilogue of The Good Citizen, focusing on the 2008 presidential election, Russell Dalton answers questions that are sure to resonate with your students and provide great fodder for lively discussion:

  • Should we be surprised by Obama's appeal to the young engaged citizens?
  • What were the sources of this appeal?
  • Who voted for Obama in November?
  • What are the potential long-term implications of Obama's mobilization of young Americans? 

ABOUT THE GOOD CITIZEN

There has been a growing chorus of political analysts with doomsday predictions of an American public that is uncivil, disengaged, and alienated. And it’s only getting worse with a younger generation of Americans who do not see the value in voting.

The good news is that the bad news is wrong.

Russell Dalton uses a new set of national public opinion surveys to show how Americans are changing their views on what good citizenship means. It’s not about recreating the halcyon politics of a generation ago, but recognition that new patterns of citizenship call for new processes and new institutions that reflect the values of the contemporary American public. Trends in participation, tolerance, and policy priorities reflect a younger generation that is more engaged, more tolerant, and more supportive of social justice. The Good Citizen shows how a younger generation is creating new norms of citizenship that are leading to a renaissance of democratic participation. An important comparative chapter in the book showcases cross-national comparisons that further demonstrate the vitality of American democracy.

This book will reshape how we think about the American public, American youth, and the prospects for contemporary democracy.


 

Listen to Russ Dalton discuss the 2008 primaries and The Good Citizen on NPR.

Click here to listen.
Interview from 'Midday Utah' which airs on KCPW.
Interview air date: February 22, 2008.

Watch a video of Russ Dalton discussing Barack Obama's appeal to the young.

Click here to watch.

Listen to Russ Dalton discuss The Good Citizen on Federal News Radio.

Click here to listen.
Interview from 'The Daily Debrief with Amy Morris' which airs on FederalNewsRadio AM 1050.
Interview air date: June 21, 2007.
Formats Available from CQ Press
ISBN: 978-1-60426-556-9 Format: Print Paperback Retail Price: $32.00 Price to Bookstores: $25.60
New to this Edition

ABOUT THE REVISED EDITION

Before the Iowa caucuses, nearly all political analysts believed that the Obama campaign strategy of targeting young Americans was doomed to failure. His election win proved the detractors wrong.

In a new epilogue of The Good Citizen, focusing on the 2008 presidential election, Russell Dalton answers questions that are sure to resonate with your students and provide great fodder for lively discussion:

  • Should we be surprised by Obama's appeal to the young engaged citizens?
  • What were the sources of this appeal?
  • Who voted for Obama in November?
  • What are the potential long-term implications of Obama's mobilization of young Americans?

CQ Press is pleased to comply with the Higher Education Opportunity Act. Please email [email protected] for additional information that may be available. Be sure to include your name, contact information, academic affiliation, and the title, author, and edition of the book in question.

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CQ Press, a Division of SAGE Publications, Inc.
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Washington, DC 20037
Table of Contents

1. Citizenship and the Transformation of Society
The Social Transformation of America
The Plot of this Book
Conclusion

DEFINING THE NORMS OF CITIZENSHIP

2. The Meaning and Measurement of Citizenship
Citizenship in Theory
What Is a “Good” Citizen?
The Two Faces of Citizenship
The Distribution of Citizenship Norms
What Kind of Citizenship?

3. Forming Citizenship Norms
A Generational Gap?
The Rising Tide of Social Status
Patterns by Gender and Ethnicity
Citizenship and Religion
Partisan Differences in Citizenship
Bringing the Pieces Together
The Social Roots of Citizenship

THE CONSEQUENCES OF CITIZENSHIP

4. Bowling Alone or Protesting with a Group
What Could You Do to Influence the Government?
The Myth of the Disengaged American
Old Repertoires and New Repertoires
Citizenship Norms and Participation
Engaged Democrats
Appendix

5. Tolerating Others
How to Measure Political Tolerance
The Unconventional Evidence: Rising Political Tolerance
Who Is Tolerant, and Who Is Not
Citizenship and Tolerance
Citizenship and Tolerance

6. Is Government the Problem, or the Solution?
What Should Government Do?
We Want Government To Be a Big Spender
Public Policy Preferences
Citizenship and Public Policy

7. Images of Leviathan
Changing Images of Government
America, Right or Wrong
Appendix

8. In Tocqueville’s Footsteps
The Norms of Citizenship
Comparing the Consequences of Citizenship
Citizenship in Comparative Perspective

CONCLUSION

9. The Two Faces of Citizenship
Rebalancing the American Political Culture
Understanding Generation X
Tocqueville Revisited
Norm Shift and American Democracy

EPILOGUE: THE 2008 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

Testimonials

"Russell J. Dalton's The Good Citizen shows that all the hand-wringing and pessimism about the collapse of citizenship in America is vastly overstated. Dalton gives a sophisticated and deep picture of what citizenship means, and shows how America's youth are in many ways far more engaged and more functional in their approach to their country than conventional wisdom suggests. This well-written, well-researched, and well- reasoned book is must reading for all the politicians, pundits and political scientists who have written and spoken for many years about the decline in citizen engagement in America."

- Norman Ornstein, American Enterprise Institute

"The conventional wisdom in political science is that younger voters fail the tests of citizenship in that they vote less than others, and are generally less knowledgeable and interested in government. The Good Citizen presents evidence that runs counter to this view and provides an expanded definition of what Russ Dalton calls 'engaged citizenship.' This provocative thesis is supported by a wide range of data and will foster a healthy debate about the meaning of civic engagement and the future of democracy."

- David B. Magleby, Brigham Young University

"The Good Citizen will be an outstanding addition to my list of required texts. I expect my students to respond very favorably: at long last there is a book that speaks favorably of youth rather than finding them wanting of cherished values and norms. There is no question that students will read this book, and likely bring it to the attention of parents, grandparents, former teachers, clergy, and myriad others who have criticized them for the way they have chosen to adapt to the contemporary world of high tech, global scope, and high-paced change taking place in a setting where established governments seem rather helpless to direct change toward a healthful and secure future. This is an exceptional book—the core idea is timely and important, the message will resonate extremely well with students (and younger faculty), and the data upon which it is based is first-rate and cleverly presented. I have no question that it will receive a great deal of attention—and be widely adopted."

- Nicholas P. Lovrich, Washington State University
Bio(s)
Russell J. Dalton, University of California, Irvine

Russell Dalton is a professor at the University of California, Irvine and former director of the Center for the Study of Democracy. His research and teaching focuses on the changing nature of citizen politics in contemporary democracies. He has received a Fulbright Research Fellowship, a German Marshall Fund Fellowship, Barbra Streisand Center Fellowship and POSCO Research Fellowship. He has served on the boards of the American National Election Study, the British Election Study and the Comparative Study of Electoral Systems. Among his recent authored or edited books are The Apartisan American (2012), Political Parties and Democratic Linkage (2011), Citizens, Context and Choice (2011), The Good Citizen (2009), Oxford Handbook of Political Behavior (2007), Citizens, Democracy and Markets around the Pacific Rim (2006), Democratic Challenges, Democratic Choices: The Erosion of Political Support in Advanced Industrial Democracies (2004), Democracy Transformed? The Expansion of Citizen Access in Advanced Industrial Democracies (2003), and Parties without Partisans: Political Change in Advanced Industrial Democracies (co-editor, 2001). He has also appeared in six feature-length Hollywood movies.

Ancillaries

New Data Supplement!

Give your students a firsthand opportunity to understand the process of public opinion research. A data supplement from the 2004 General Social Survey/International Social Survey Program used in this book is available online at college.cqpress.com/dalton. This includes SPSS data files for the United States, Britain, France and Germany; and a codebook describing these files.

Also available from Russ Dalton, click here to take a look at the companion website for Citizen Politics!

Sample Pages