Harvey Mansfield (Interview 5), Conversations with Bill Kristol, August 31, 2015.
The fifth conversation in our ongoing series with the distinguished Harvard government professor considers the French political philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-59). Mansfield and Kristol discuss key themes in Tocqueville’s work, including the nature of democracy and his views of America. They also consider Tocqueville’s views as to why individualism is a danger to democracy, how associations counteract individualism, and how religion and liberty reinforce one another in our times. Mansfield also describes Tocqueville’s own life and political career, and how his thought differs from that of other modern thinkers such as J.S. Mill, Edmund Burke, John Locke, and Thomas Hobbes.
To learn more about Alexis de Tocqueville, visit the page on Tocqueville at Great Thinkers.