Tocqueville and Mill both offer theories about the kind of despotism or tyranny which is likely to spring up within a democratic society like the United States. Write a paper in which you compare and contrast Mill and Tocqueville’s theories about despotism in democracy and its causes. Then reflect on how these visions of despotism are or are not manifested in our contemporary society. Which form of despotism do you think we should worry about the most (and why) or do you see some other form of despotism as more likely?
Your paper should be 5-7 pages in length (double spaced, 12 pt font). You may use any of the texts we have read this semester to support your argument. You may find the readings from the last week of class particularly helpful, but you are not required to reference any of the texts other than Mill and Tocqueville. You may use outside sources BUT ONLY FOR FACTUAL STATEMENTS AND NOT FOR ANALYSIS/OPINION. For example, you may want to quote certain statistics or refer to legislation or current events. Using such things as news articles or polling results is fine. Opinion pieces or other forms of analysis are not acceptable. If you are unsure if a source is acceptable send me a message with the source and I will tell you. Citations should be parenthetical with author’s last name and page number. Although this paper is asking for your own views on the subject please avoid the use of “I” as much as possible. The key to writing a good paper here is giving reasons – make sure to give Mill and Tocqueville’s reasons in support of their conclusions and your reasons in support of your own. Be sure to look at the paper 1 feedback and my list of paper do’s and don’ts Download paper do’s and don’tsfor help.
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