Dewey

Dewey’s ideology (in my opinion)= Faith in (Human Nature + rationality + Scientific Method)

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“News signifies something which has just happened, and which is new, just because it deviates from the old and regular.  But its meaning depends upon relation to what it imports, to what its social consequences are.  This import cannot be determined unless the new is placed in relationship to the old…without this coordination and consecutiveness, events are not events, but mere occurrences”

(John Dewey, The Public and Its Problems, 153).

http://itech.fgcu.edu/faculty/rcoughlin/Notes%20on%20Dewey.htm

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Dewey, John (1976). Creative democracy: The task before us. In J. Boydston (Ed.),
John Dewey: The later works, 1925-1953, volume 14
(pp. 224-230). Carbondale:
Southern Illinois University Press. (Original work published 1939)
Creative Democracy–The Task Before Us
Under present circumstances I cannot hope to conceal the fact that I have managed to
exist eighty years.
At the present time, the frontier is moral, not physical. The period of free lands that
seemed boundless in extent has vanished. Unused resources are now human rather
than material.They are found in the waste of grown men and women who are without
the chance to work, and in the young men and young women who find doors closed
where there was once opportunity. The crisis that one hundred and fifty years ago called
out social and political inventiveness is with us in a form which puts a heavier demand
on human creativeness.
At all events this is what I mean when I say that we now have to re-create by deliberate
and determined endeavor the kind of democracy which in its origin one hundred and
fifty years ago was largely the product of a fortunate combination of men and
circumstances. We have lived for a long time upon the heritage that came to us from the
happy conjunction of men and events in an earlier day. The present state of the world is
more than a reminder that we have now to put forth every energy of our own to prove
worthy of our heritage. It is a challenge to do for the critical and complex conditions of
today what the men of an earlier day did for simpler conditions.
If I emphasize that the task can be accomplished only by inventive effort and creative
activity, it is in part because the depth of the present crisis is due in considerable part to
the fact that for a long period we acted as if our democracy were something that
perpetuated itself automatically; as if our ancestors had succeeded in setting up a
machine that solved the problem of perpetual motion in politics. We acted as if
democracy were something that took place mainly at Washington and Albany–or some
other state capital–under the impetus of what happened when men and women went to
the polls once a year or so– which is a somewhat extreme way of saying that we have
had the habit of thinking of democracy as a kind of political mechanism that will work as
long as citizens were reasonably faithful in performing political duties.
Of late years we have heard more and more frequently that this is not
enough; that democracy is a way of life. This saying gets down to hard pan. But I am
not sure that something of the externality of the old idea does not cling to the new and
better statement. In any case we can escape from this external way of thinking only as
we realize in thought and act that democracy is a personal way of individual life; that it
signifies the possession and continual use of certain attitudes, forming personal
character and determining desire and purpose in all the relations of life. Instead of
thinking of our own dispositions and habits as accommodated to certain institutions we
have to learn to think of the latter as expressions, projections and extensions of
habitually dominant personal attitudes.
Democracy as a personal, an individual, way of life involves nothing fundamentally new.
But when applied it puts a new practical meaning in old ideas. Put into effect it signifies
that powerful present enemies of democracy can be successfully met only by the
creation of personal attitudes in individual human beings; that we must get over our
tendency to think that its defense can be found in any external means whatever,
whether military or civil, if they are separated from individual attitudes so deep- seated
as to constitute personal character.
Democracy is a way of life controlled by a working faith in the possibilities of human
nature. Belief in the Common Man is a familiar article in the democratic creed. That
belief is without basis and significance save as it means faith in the potentialities of
human nature as that nature is exhibited in every human being irrespective of race,
color, sex, birth and family, of material or cultural wealth. This faith may be enacted in
statutes, but it is only on paper unless it is put in force in the attitudes which human
beings display to one another in all the incidents and relations of daily life.
To denounce Naziism for intolerance, cruelty and stimulation of hatred amounts to fostering insincerity
if, in our personal relations to other persons, if, in our daily walk and conversation, we
are moved by racial, color or other class prejudice; indeed, by anything save a generous
belief in their possibilities as human beings, a belief which brings with it the need for
providing conditions which will enable these capacities to reach fulfillment. The
democratic faith in human equality is belief that every human being, independent of the
quantity or range of his personal endowment, has the right to equal opportunity with
every other person for development of whatever gifts he has. The
democratic belief in the principle of leadership is a generous one. It is universal. It is
belief in the capacity of every person to lead his own life free from coercion and
imposition by others provided right conditions are supplied.
Democracy is a way of personal life controlled not merely by faith in human nature in
general but by faith in the capacity of human beings for intelligent judgment and action if
proper conditions are furnished. I have been accused more than once and from
opposed quarters of an undue, a utopian, faith in the possibilities of intelligence and in
education as a correlate of intelligence. At all events, I did not invent this faith. I
acquired it from my surroundings as far as those surroundings were animated by the
democratic spirit. For what is the faith of democracy in the role of consultation, of
conference, of persuasion, of discussion, in formation of public opinion, which in the
long run is self- corrective, except faith in the capacity of the intelligence of the common
man to respond with commonsense to the free play of facts and ideas which are
secured by effective guarantees of free inquiry, free assembly and free communication?
I am willing to leave to upholders of totalitarian states of the right and the left the view
that faith in the capacities of intelligence is utopian. For the faith is so deeply embedded
in the methods which are intrinsic to democracy that when a professed democrat denies
the faith he convicts himself of treachery to his profession.
When I think of the conditions under which men and women are living in many foreign
countries today, fear of espionage, with danger hanging over the meeting of friends for
friendly conversation in private gatherings, I am inclined to believe that the heart and
final guarantee of democracy is in free gatherings of neighbors on the street corner to
discuss back and forth what is read in uncensored news of the day, and in gatherings of
friends in the living rooms of houses and apartments to converse freely with one
another.
Intolerance, abuse, calling of names because of differences of opinion about
religion or politics or business, as well as because of differences of race, color, wealth
or degree of culture are treason to the democratic way of life. For everything which bars
freedom and fullness of communication sets up barriers that divide human beings into
sets and cliques, into antagonistic sects and factions, and thereby undermines the
democratic way of life.
Merely legal guarantees of the civil liberties of free
belief, free expression, free assembly are of little avail if in daily life freedom of
communication, the give and take of ideas, facts, experiences, is choked by mutual
suspicion, by abuse, by fear and hatred. These things destroy the essential condition of
the democratic way of living even more effectually than open coercion which–as the
example of totalitarian states proves–is effective only when it succeeds in breeding
hate, suspicion, intolerance in the minds of individual human beings.
Finally, given the two conditions just mentioned, democracy as a way of life is controlled
by personal faith in personal day-by- day working together with others. Democracy is
the belief that even when needs and ends or consequences are different for each
individual, the habit of amicable cooperation–which may include, as in sport, rivalry and
competition–is itself a priceless addition to life. To take as far as possible every conflict
which arises–and they are bound to arise–out of the atmosphere and medium of force,
of violence as a means of settlement into that of discussion and of intelligence is to treat
those who disagree– even profoundly–with us as those from whom we may learn, and
in so far, as friends.
A genuinely democratic faith in peace is faith in the possibility of
conducting disputes, controversies and conflicts as cooperative undertakings in which
both parties learn by giving the other a chance to express itself, instead of having one
party conquer by forceful suppression of the other–a suppression which is none the less
one of violence when it takes place by psychological means of ridicule, abuse,
intimidation, instead of by overt imprisonment or in concentration camps. To cooperate
by giving differences a chance to show themselves because of the belief that the
expression of difference is not only a right of the other persons but is a means of
enriching one’s own life-experience, is inherent in the democratic personal way of life.
If what has been said is charged with being a set of moral commonplaces, my only reply
is that that is just the point in saying them. For to get rid of the habit of thinking of
democracy as something institutional and external and to acquire the habit of treating it
as a way of personal life is to realize that democracy is a moral ideal and so far as it
becomes a fact is a moral fact. It is to realize that democracy is a reality only
as it is indeed a commonplace of living.
Since my adult years have been given to the pursuit of philosophy, I shall ask your indulgence if in concluding I state briefly the democratic faith in the formal terms of a philosophic position. So stated, democracy is belief in the ability of human experience to
generate the aims and methods by which further experience will grow in ordered
richness. Every other form of moral and social faith rests upon the idea that experience
must be subjected at some point or other to some form of external control; to some
“authority” alleged to exist outside the processes of experience. Democracy is the faith
that the process of experience is more important than any special result attained, so
that special results achieved are of ultimate value only as they are used to enrich and
order the ongoing process.
Since the process of experience is capable of being
educative, faith in democracy is all one with faith in experience and education. All ends
and values that are cut off from the ongoing process become arrests, fixations. They
strive to fixate what has been gained instead of using it to open the road and point the
way to new and better experiences.
If one asks what is meant by experience in this connection my reply is that it is that free
interaction of individual human beings with surrounding conditions, especially the
human surroundings, which develops and satisfies need and desire by increasing
knowledge of things as they are. Knowledge of conditions as they are is the only solid
ground for communication and sharing; all other communication means the subjection
of some persons to the personal opinion of other persons. Need and desire–out of
which grow purpose and direction of energy–go beyond what exists, and hence beyond
knowledge, beyond science. They continually open the way into the unexplored and
unattained future.
Democracy as compared with other ways of life is the sole way of living which believes
wholeheartedly in the process of experience as end and as means; as that which is
capable of generating the science which is the sole dependable authority for the
direction of further experience and which releases emotions, needs and desires so as to
call into being the things that have not existed in the past. For every way of life that fails
in its democracy limits the contacts, the exchanges, the communications, the interactions by which experience is steadied while it is also enlarged and enriched. The
task of this release and enrichment is one that has to be carried on day by day. Since it
is one that can have no end till experience itself comes to an end, the task of
democracy is forever that of creation of a freer and more humane experience in which
all share and to which all contribute.

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mr. lippmann seems to surrender the case for press too readily – to assume too
easily that what the press is it must continue to be. it is true that news must
deal  with  events  rather  than  with  conditions  and  forces. it  is  true  that  the
latter, taken by themselves,    are    too    remote    and    abstract    to    make    an    appeal.    Their
record will be too dull and unsensational to reach the mass of readers. But there
remains the possibility of treating news events in the light of a continuing study
and  record  of  underlying  conditions.  The  union  of  social  science,  access  to
facts, and the art of literary presentation is not an easy thing to achieve. But its
attainment seems to me the only genuine solution of the problem of an intelligent    direction    of    social    life

(Dewey,    1922:    288;    emphasis    in    original).

Dewey,    J.    (1922)    ‘Review    of    Public Opinion’,    The New Republic,    3    May,    286–8

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The enlightenment of public opinion still seems to me to have
priority over the enlightenment of officials and directors.
Of course, the expert organization for which Mr. Lippmann
calls is inherently desirable. There is no questioning that fact. But
his argument seems to me to exaggerate the importance of politics and political action,
and also to evade the problem of how the
latter is to be effectively directed by organized intelligence unless
there is an accompanying direct enlightenment of popular opinion, as well as an ex post facto indirect instruction.

Dewey. J. (1983f) [1922] Review of Walter Lippman’sPublic Opinion. In J. A. Boydston
(ed.), John Dewey: The Middle Works, Vol. 13 of The Collected Works of John Dewey
(Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press), 337–344.

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Till the Great Society is converted in to a Great Community, the Public will remain in eclipse.
Communication can alone create a great community.

The Public and its Problems:(Dewey, p. 142).

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‘News’    signifies    something    which    has    just    happened,    and    which    is    new    just
because it deviates from the old and regular. But its meaning depends upon
relation    to    what    it    imports,    to    what    its    social    consequences    are.    This    import
cannot be determined unless the new is placed in relation to the old, to what
has happened and been integrated into the course of events. without coordination  and  consecutiveness,  events  are  not  events,  but  mere  occurrences, intrusions;    an    event    implies    that    out    of    which    a    happening    proceeds.    Hence
even if we discount the influence of private interests in procuring suppression,
secrecy    and    misinterpretation,    we    have    here    an    explanation    of    the    triviality
and    ‘sensational’    quality    of    so    much    of    what    passes    as    news    (Dewey,    1927:
179–80)

‘Until secrecy, prejudice, bias, misrepresentation, and propaganda as well as sheer ignorance are replaced
by inquiry and publicity, we have no way of telling how apt for judgement of social policies
the existing intelligence of the masses may be’     (1927:     209).

‘A    class of    experts,’    Dewey    contends,    ‘is    inevitably    so    removed    from    common    interests    as    to become    a    class    with    private    interests    and    private    knowledge,    which    in    social    matters is    not    knowledge    at    all’    (1927:    207)

No    government    by experts    in    which    the    masses    do    not    have    the    chance    to    inform    the    experts    as    to    their needs    can    be    anything    but    an    oligarchy    managed    in    the    interests    of    the    few,’    Dewey maintains    (1927:    208).

Dewey,    J.    (1927)    The Public and Its Problems. athens, oh: swallow press

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“the unsolved problem of democracy is the construction of an
education which will develop that kind of individuality which is intelligently alive
to the common life and sensitively loyal to its common maintenance.”

John Dewey, “Education and Social Direction,” in The Middle Works 1899-1924, vol. 11, ed. JoAnn
Boydston (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1985), 57

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Democracy is a way of life controlled by a working faith in the possibilities of human
nature.Belief in the Common Man is a familiar article in the democratic creed. That
belief is without basis and significance save as it means faith in the potentialities of
human nature as that nature is exhibited in every human being irrespective of race,
color, sex, birth and family, of material or cultural wealth. This faith may be enacted in
statutes, but it is only on paper unless it is put in force in the attitudes which human
beings display to one another in all the incidents and relations of daily life.

To denounce Naziism for intolerance, cruelty and stimulation of hatred amounts to fostering insincerity
if, in our personal relations to other persons, if, in our daily walk and conversation, we
are moved by racial, color or other class prejudice; indeed, by anything save a generous
belief in their possibilities as human beings, a belief which brings with it the need for
providing conditions which will enable these capacities to reach fulfillment.

The democratic faith in human equality is belief that every human being, independent of
the quantity or range of his personal endowment, has the right to equal opportunity
with every other person for development of whatever gifts he has. The
democratic belief in the principle of leadership is a generous one. It is universal. It is
belief in the capacity of every person to lead his own life free from coercion and
imposition by others provided right conditions are supplied.
Democracy is a way of personal life controlled not merely by faith in human nature in
general but by faith in the capacity of human beings for intelligent judgment and action if
proper conditions are furnished. I have been accused more than once and from
opposed quarters of an undue, a utopian, faith in the possibilities of intelligence and in
education as a correlate of intelligence. At all events, I did not invent this faith. I
acquired it from my surroundings as far as those surroundings were animated by the
democratic spirit. For what is the faith of democracy in the role of consultation, of
conference, of persuasion, of discussion, in formation of public opinion, which in the
long run is self- corrective, except faith in the capacity of the intelligence of the common
man to respond with commonsense to the free play of facts and ideas which are
secured by effective guarantees of free inquiry, free assembly and free communication?

I am willing to leave to upholders of totalitarian states of the right and the left the view
that faith in the capacities of intelligence is utopian. For the faith is so deeply embedded
in the methods which are intrinsic to democracy that when a professed democrat denies
the faith he convicts himself of treachery to his profession.

If what has been said is charged with being a set of moral commonplaces, my only reply
is that that is just the point in saying them. For to get rid of the habit of thinking of
democracy as something institutional and external and to acquire the habit of treating it
as a way of personal life is to realize that democracy is a moral ideal and so far as it
becomes a fact is a moral fact. It is to realize that democracy is a reality only
as it is indeed a commonplace of living.

Dewey, John (1976). Creative democracy: The task before us. In J. Boydston (Ed.),
John Dewey: The later works, 1925-1953, volume 14(pp. 224-230). Carbondale:
Southern Illinois University Press. (Original work published 1939)

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Belief that democratic social arrangements promote a better quality of human experience, one which is more widely acceptable and enjoyed, than do non-democratic and anti-democratic forms of
life?

John Dewey, Experience and Education, in Boydston,The Later Works, 1925-1953, vol. 13, 18.

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to actively participate in the making of knowledge is the highest prerogative of man and the
only warrant of his freedom.

John Dewey, Individualism Old and New(New York: Capricorn, 1929), 155-56.

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The future of democracy is allied with the spread of the scientific attitude.

Dewey, Freedom and Culture,168.

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Dewey “prophesies that ‘the assembling and reporting of news would be a very different thing if the genuine
interests of reporters were permitted to work freely’ (1927: 182). Although he does not
elaborate on this point, it is apparent that dewey is discerning in the press a capacity
for social reform that Lippmann steadfastly refused to grant it. The journalist, like
the social scientist, is charged with the responsibility of providing the information
about pressing issues of the day – as well as interpretations of its significance – so as
to enable members of the public to arrive at sound judgements. in grappling with
hat he perceives to be essentially an ‘intellectual problem’ rather than one of public
policy, it seems apparent to dewey that democracy must become more democratic,
that is, more firmly rooted in everyday communities of interaction. To the extent that
the journalist contributes to the organisation of the public – not least by facilitating
lay participation in the rough and tumble of decision-making – the citizenry will be
equipped to recognise, even challenge the authority exercised by powerful interests.
Dewey’s conviction that the Great Society can be transformed into the Great
Community rests, crucially, on his belief in the rationality of ordinary people to
bring to life democratic ideals when provided with the opportunity to do so.”

Allan, Stuart (2010). “Journalism and Its Publics: The Lippmann & Dewey Debate”, pp. 60-70, in Stuart
Allan (eds.). The Routledge Companion to News and Journalism, Routledge

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Quotes on this page are cited by Allan, Stuart (2010) and Margonis, F. (1997) and Dewey, John (1976).

Allan, Stuart (2010). “Journalism and Its Publics: The Lippmann & Dewey Debate”, pp. 60-70, in Stuart
Allan (eds.). The Routledge Companion to News and Journalism, Routledge

Dewey, John (1976). Creative democracy: The task before us. In J. Boydston (Ed.),
John Dewey: The later works, 1925-1953, volume 14(pp. 224-230). Carbondale:
Southern Illinois University Press. (Original work published 1939)
Margonis, F. (1997). Dewey and the arrogance of reason. Philosophy of Education Archive, 365-373.