Hannah Arendt | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 14 pages of analysis & critique of Hannah Arendt.
This section contains 4,003 words
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Buy the Critical Essay by Jean Bethke Elshtain

SOURCE: "Hannah Arendt's French Revolution," in Salmagundi, Vol. 84, Fall, 1989, pp. 203-12.

In the essay below, Elshtain discusses Arendt's interpretation of the revolutionary tradition, focusing on her "construction of the French and American revolutions as prototypes of 'successful' revolutions."

Of the Chinese students with their worker and peasant allies, massed by the tens of thousands in Tiananmen Square in defiance of martial law, it can be said that Hannah Arendt would have loved it. Their actions are "spontaneous" in the sense that they could not have reasonably been predicted. Their rhetoric is cast in the language of freedom. A papier mache representation of the Statue of Liberty makes its appearance in Shanghai. A student in Beijing quotes Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Whatever the eventual outcome of these momentous events, they seem to fit Arendtian specifications for "people's power" as against those revolutionary actions she lamented. By turning to the language...

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This section contains 4,003 words
(approx. 14 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Jean Bethke Elshtain
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