Reflections On the Organizational Emergence of Democratic Nation-States
Reflections On the Organizational Emergence of Democratic Nation-States Elisabeth Clemens Department of Sociology University of Chicago Points of (Re)Engagement Properly speaking, individuals dont have goals; roles have goals. Consistency of motivations across roles should in no way be presumed for complicated persons. (p. 5). Annealing: The more explosive the mix of elements being combined into hybrids, the more important it is to blend them in an oscillatory manner. Increase fluidity, decrease fluidity, increase fluidity, decrease fluidity. (p. 27) innovation in language usually lags, not leads . . . Mostly we all play interpretive catch-up with events, trying to respond to the jaggedness of the unpredicted twists of a vibrant and vast social world far beyond our comprehension. (pp. 40-41)
Networks of Democratic Revolution: Creating a Constitutive Absence Mobilization of insurgency driven by grievances generated by the existing architecture of governance and along diverse networks of ties and communication (Breen 2010) Insurgency intersects with networks of discourse, theorizing new forms of governance. Successful insurgency produces a spillover of these linked networks to control of positions charged with responsibility for governance. A new production standard without an accompanying production rule In the first two modern democratic revolutions, there is great ambiguity about what democratic governance would actually entail. Fuels ferment of borrowing and recombination (from contract theory, commonwealth tradition, republican philosophy, ancient history, etc.)
Normative claims (the production standard) provide a language for contesting and delegitimating any provisional organizational arrangement of democratic governance (the production rules). Indeterminacy evident in the different aftermaths of the American & French Revolutions (esp. with respect to rules regulating the relationship of the political domain to other domains of social organization) Modes of Thinning, Trajectories of Change [The importance of] redundancy [to reproductive stability] suggests that sensitivity to system tipping dramatic network cascades that we associate with organizational inventions increases as redundancy is thinned out. Too much thinning and the system will collapse, but some threshold level of network thinning may move a highly redundant system toward being poised to tip. (P&P, p. 26). In our view, the pattern of change, and not the amount of change itself, must be considered as the basic variable. Crozier, The Bureaucratic Phenomenon, p. 226. To what extent do the conditions that enable novel
recombination shape durable trajectories? Thinning, Invention, and Innovation in the Early Republic Europeans, observes historian Joyce Appleby (2000, 25), were astounded by the presence of social order in America in the absence of social solidarity. Their amazement emphasizes how unusual was the task of transforming colonial societies into the American nation. In the wake of the Revolution: Coordinating level of imperial governance is removed, leaving courts, councils, legislatures to be modified by new political demands. The remaining pillar of imperial governance, the established churches in each colony/state, was dismantled (Hatch, Democratization of American Christianity). A New Primeval Soup Persistence of two remnants of earlier arrangements of organized sovereignty that are now de-coupled from government:
Disestablished churches, supported through novel principles of voluntarism Chartered corporations, set loose from durable legislative control by Dartmouth College (1819). Construction of a peripheral state, resources concentrated in ports, customs, Navy, and the Army on the frontier. Innovation of new relational structures for political life: The popular political party The post office How a Free People Conduct A Long War, Charles Still (1863) For the first half of the 19th C, the architectures of governance combined and recombined these elements. Modern civil war, however, provided a serious challenged to reconciling the practical organization of government activity with norms of political liberty and the dignity of democratic citizens. The Confederate States of America was constructed on a centralized, European model (Bensel, Yankee Leviathan).
In the North, the puzzle of How a Free People Conduct a Long War provoked a pair of organizational inventions: The United States Sanitary Commission The United States Christian Commission U.S.S.C Buildings of the Great Central Fair, Philadelphia Recognized as Political Inventions: Keep the Army Close to the People The whole of the American people men, women, and children alike, in thus rendering their armies efficient, prove conclusively that the war is not carried on as many in Europe suppose, -- by the Government of a minority, but is waged by the great mass of the citizens themselves. In no other way can you explain the colossal achievements of this Volunteer Commission. Edmund Crisp Fisher, Military Discipline and Volunteer Philanthropy (1864)
Such popular exhibitions of patriotic and religious feeling are inconceivable where the army is simply an instrument of oligarchic power, and war is for royal ends alone, -- removed from the knowledge and interests of the people. Hon. Geo. Bancroft, in a private letter, remarks: -- Nothing like the self-organized commissions for the relief of our armies ever was before. The Christian Commission is the fruit of our institutions, -- could not grow up, would not be allowed to grow up in any nation in Europe, unless it be in England, and could not there in the huge, free, popular way that we have witnessed here. Republicanism proves herself the friend of charity and of religion, and may the union endure forever. Go on, and write your noble work; -- every word of it will be the eulogy of free institutions. Lemuel Moss, Annals of the United States Christian Commission (1868, p. 60). Novelty Stems from Hybridity It will be difficult to find two principles more seemingly antagonistic than Military Discipline and Volunteer Philanthropy. The Discipline necessary for the cohesion and effectiveness of armies proceeds from set rules framed upon the experience of long years: it is cold, impassive, unimpulsive, non-eclectic, autocratic, tyrannical; it robs man of his individuality, deprives him of free-will -- and looking only at the end to be attained, treats the soldier as a simple part of a great machine, to be strained, forced, and overwrought, if needs be, and cast aside when worn out or otherwise incapacitated. Reverse the position
in all its several particulars, and we have the most distant and opposite end of a far-stretching diagonal, -- Volunteer Philanthropy. Edmund Crisp Fisher, Military Discipline and Volunteer Philanthropy. A Paper read before the Social Science Congress held in the City of New York During the month of September, 1864, (London: William Ridgway, 169 Picadilly,1864). Foreign Confirmation of Novelty History has afforded no other example though it is to be hoped that it will hereafter afford many of so great a work of unselfishness extemporized by the spontaneous self-devotion and organizing genius of a people, altogether independently of the Government. John Stuart Mill, Our Daily Fare, June 20, 1864 Mazzini Recognizes a New Production Rule for Democratic State-Building Giuseppe Mazzini requests a good, accurate primary history of the doings of the Sanitary Commission and all that tends to prove the immense vitality of your republican principle? What you have
done is so heroic that I feel the profound necessity of having it publicly known in all our countries, and especially in my own. Your triumph is our triumph: the triumph of all, I hope, who are struggling for the advent of a republican era. Our adversaries were pointing to the worst period of the old French revolution as to the irrefutable proof of republics leading to terror, anarchy and military despotism. You have refuted all that. You have done more for us in four years than fifty years of teaching, preaching and writing, from all your European brothers, have been able to do. Letter from Mazzini, Liberator (July 7, 1865) Inconsistent Motivations Across Roles, Incompatible Relational Geometries Civic Dignity of Citizen-Soldiers v. Charitable Dependency: As for the extras, they can and ought to pay for them. It is better to spend their money and preserve their self-respect. Disguise it as we may, if we continue the present practice beyond the period of dire necessity, we introduce a system of alms-giving and alms-taking; and no purity of motive can avert the degrading influence of such a system.
Christian Charity v. Military Discipline: At times I may have displayed an impatience when the agents manifested an excess of zeal, in pushing forward their persons and stores when we had no means to make use of their charities. But they could hardly be expected to measure the importance of other interests, and I have always given them credit for good and pure motives. Now that the great end is attained, and in our quiet rooms and offices we can look back on the past with composure, I am not only willing, but pleased with the opportunity, to express my belief that your charity was noble in its conception, and applied with as much zeal, kindness and discretion as the times permitted. Samuel Gridley Howe, Letter to Mrs. _______, and other Loyal Women, Touching the Matter of Contributions for the Army, and Other Matters Connected with the War (1862) Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman on the USCC (quoted in Moss, pp. 238-39) Civic Benevolence v. Government Responsibility: What is the govt. doing? Why cant it do
all? Why is the Sanitary the Best channel for the gifts of the people? Louisa Lee Schuyler summarizing concerns of women volunteers (quoted in Attie, Patriotic Toil, p. 138) Decades of Oscillation follow: The Great Commissions are disbanded: But individuals carry models to cities: Elite men of the USSC found Union League Clubs Women of the USSC found Charity Organization Societies Agents of the USCC return to urban mission movement, including Dwight Moody, Gods Man for the Gilded Age Relational Geometries are Reconfigured: Asymmetrical dependence between donor and beneficiary is replaced by: Horizontal kula ring among elite donors Relation to beneficiaries mediated by increasingly professionalized charity workers and social work organizations Intersecting networks are stabilized by the invention of the federated campaign or Community Chest model; civic networks subordinated to
business organizations (Chambers of Commerce) Pulse of Nationalization Organizational mutation: rechartering of American Red Cross links civic networks to federal executive. Event-driven transposition: A dozen Community Chests go into the war, hundreds of War Chests by Armistice. Donating becomes a mark of civic membership: Make It Unanimous Red Cross achieves membership of 22% of US population by armistice. Organized benevolence linked to new resource stream by adoption of charitable deduction to the individual income tax via the War Revenue Act. Success, then conflict over transposition to domestic crises Red Cross chapters in 2500+ of over 3000 counties (nationallocal); 329 cities have Community Chest organizations by 1929 (local, loose alliance nationally). NB: different political geographies and alliance ties of the two major meta-organizations in the charitable field had
very different political geographies and alliances. Hoover, the Master of Emergencies, and the Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 a success ($10m voluntary contributions, $7m in-kind aid from government) In the early years of the Depression, first unprecedented mobilization of resources, followed by recognition of inadequacy (new production rules for relief of fellow citizens). Community Chests and Amounts Raised, 1914-1931 (Walker 1933: 1205. From data compiled by the Association of Community Chests and Councils). Year Number of Chests Amount Raised 1914 1
363 75,108,792 1931 377 83,213,428 Recombination and Co-Evolution FDR himself rehabilitates use of organized benevolence to solve non-governmental problems ( March of Dimes) Social Security and many labor regulations exempt religious and eleemosynary organizations. 1935 Wealth Act establishes business charitable deduction. New exemplary biographies linking government, business, and organized civic benevolence.
e.g. Walter S. Gifford (War Industries Board, President of AT&T, President of NY Charity Organization Society, Presidents Committee on Unemployment Relief, Ambassador to the Court of St. James). Asymmetrical Co-Evolution Figure 2: Charitable Contributions by Individuals (Adjusted 1918 Dollars) 12,000 8,000 6,000 4,000 Figure 5: Number of Charitable and Nonprofit Organizations 2,000 800,000 19 23 19
0 0 1945 1950 1955 1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 Source: Hall (2006), Table 55-64 Source: Source: Hall (2006), T able B676-690 Back to Crozier: Patterns, not Levels, of Change Struggles over the form of democratic governance continue to work on the intersection of voluntary or nonprofit organizations, flows of government funds, and delegations of government authority. Democratizing moment of Great Society: maximum feasible participation and the Community Action Agencies. Neoliberalism has come with privatization and contracting-out.
At the present moment, we see the points of institutionalized intersection of networks the charitable deductions, the exemptions of religious organizations from labor law functioning as a seam of structural opportunity for those who seek to diminish the scope of government activity accountable to electoral/legislative authority. Back to Padgett and Powell: Inconsistency and Indeterminacy as Engines of Sustained Oscillation On the inconsistency of motivations across roles (yes, but): the inconsistencies across roles and the incompatibility of distinct relational geometries in a Simmelian sense generate friction and energy that destabilize settlements and drive experimentation. On annealing: the lack of a set of production rules that conform to legitimated production standards (a constitutive indeterminacy or contradiction) creates a focus for sustained oscillatory recombination of a durable set of organizational resources. In the case of the first modern democratic revolutions, normative ideals for governance preceded stable procedures for organizing
governance by the consent of the governed. France* United States The principle of all sovereignty resides essentially in the nation. No body nor individual may exercise any authority which does not proceed directly from the nation. Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen, 1789 That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. Declaration of Independence, 1776 Rigorous legal exclusion of organizations and associations that might intrude upon
or mediate the expression of this popular sovereign will (e.g. Le Chapelier laws); extreme thinning of networks organizing the polity. Recognition of right to assembly and permissive interpretation of corporate charters creates context for proliferation of organizational forms in civil society. Development of centralized administrative state; extensive collaborations with private and nonprofit entities develop late. Development as a government out of sight (Balogh 2009), governance through arrangements of infrastructural power (Mann 1986) and delegated governance (Morgan and Campbell 2011), citizenship enacted through organized benevolence.
*Pierre Ronsavallon, The Demands of Liberty: Civil Society in France Since the Revolution (Harvard, 2007) I believe in the Red Cross for ordinary times and events. In the cities we have the community chest, to which I contribute regularly for the dependants [sic] of our city, but the drought is very unusual and covers the country people. I think they should be helped and that adequately; but it all should be done by law and the money raised through the income tax. No other way is democratic and fair and by it the burden falls on those who can pay it and in just proportion. Now if you attempt to raise it by soliciting methods; you will penalize the good people and put an unjust burden on them and the stingy will not contribute. This city is typical; I know some rich citizens who will not give; no orator can touch their hearts; and the generous ones who are already doing much will be compelled to do more. I beg of you to try and have money raised by law and taxes; no other way is fair to all. W.B. Faris (a banker) to Herbert Hoover, January 31, 1931
Ediciones Mundiprensa, Madrid. 365 pp -Cantwell M. (2001). Caracteristicas y Condiciones Recomendadas para el Almacenamiento por Tiempo Largo de Frutas y Hortalizas Frescas. 8pp. -Cermeño, Z. S. (1988).
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