Democracy: What does it mean? Why does it matter? The answers to these two critical questions are to be found in Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained: The True Meaning of Democracy. The story begins in Athens with an overview of democracy as practiced in the day-to-day lives of the ancient Athenians, and then turns to Rome and the Italian city-states. There is a section devoted to the effects of war on emergent democracy in the Middle Ages and in France at the time of the Revolution. Democracy in the early years of the United States, before the signing of the Constitution, is explored in detail. In 1776, the people of Pennsylvania, ordinary folk who felt their government was not fulfilling its social responsibility, wrote their own constitution with no experts to guide their pen. By studying the form of government they created and considering the process that put it in place, we get an inside look at how democracy really works. The book concludes with a review of recent experiments in democracy, especially in India and Latin America. Democracy is a word oft used but rarely understood. The reader of Paradise Lost, Paradise Regained will have no doubt as to its true meaning.
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