Dewey

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

Scientific Method)

————————————————————————–

“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

————————————————————————–

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.

————————————————————————–

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

————————————————————————-

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.

—————————————————————————

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).

—————————————————————————————————————

‘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

————————————————————————————————————–

“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

————————————————————————————————————

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)

———————————————————————————

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.

——————————————————————————-

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.

——————————————————————————————————————–

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

Dewey,
Freedom and Culture,168.

——————————————————————————————————————–

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

=====================================================================

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.