In , Walter Lippmann published The Phantom Public, denouncing the ‘ mystical fallacy of democracy.’ Decrying romantic democratic models that privilege. In , Walter Lippmann published the Phantom Public, arguing for what he referred to as the fallacy of democracy. He wrote, “I have not happened to meet. In it he came fully to terms with the inadequacy of traditional democratic theory.” This volume is part of a continuing series on the major works of Walter Lippmann .

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My library Help Advanced Book Search. I would advise people to read this, and read it slowly. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. References to this book Public Deliberation: The Phantom Public is a book published in by journalist Walter Lippmann in which he expresses his lack of faith in the democratic system by arguing that the public exists merely as an illusion, myth, and inevitably a phantom.

Instead, individuals move in and out of these capacities: The distinction between agents and bystanders It would subject them to the least possible interference from ignorant and meddlesome outsiders” [the public] It reveals Lippmann at a time when he was most critical of the ills of American democracy. I learned about the bleak outlook with which Progressives view The People.

Sep 01, Martha marked it as wishlist. To ask other readers questions about The Phantom Publicplease lipppmann up. Public opinion responds to failures in the administration of government by deciding, through voting, whether to throw one party out in favor or another. The book provoked phzntom response from philosopher John Deweywho argued in The Public and its Problems that the public was not a phantom but merely “in eclipse” and that robust democratic politics are possible.

Antipopulist in sentiment, this volume defends elitism as a serious and distinctive intellectual option, one with considerable precursors in the American past. Rick Sadlier rated it it was amazing Nov 29, Sarah rated it really liked it Mar 22, Lippmann’s demythologized view of the American system of government resonates today.


The Dewey-Lippmann Debate Today: In it he came fully to terms with puglic inadequacy of traditional democratic theory.

Walter Lippman, The Phantom Public – PhilPapers

According phanrom Lippmann, the average voter is incapable of governance; what is called the public is merely a “phantom. Today, the exchange between Lippmann and Dewey continues to be important for the critique of contemporary journalism, and press critics such as New York University ‘s Jay Rosen invoke it to support moves toward civic journalism. Edit this record Mark as duplicate Export citation Find it on Scholar Request removal from index Translate to english Revision history.

Antipopulist in sentiment, this volume defends elitism as a serious and distinctive intellectual option, one publuc considerable precursors in the American past. Walter Lippmann, an American political journalist, dominated political journalism in the United States from World War I almost until his death.

Account Options Sign in. Added to PP index Total downloads 17of 2, Recent downloads 6 months 3of 2, How can Phatom increase my downloads?

Account Options Sign in. Feb 05, Brian rated it did not like it Shelves: Will rated it really liked it Nov 26, Transaction Publishers- Political Science – pages.

The Phantom Public | work by Lippmann |

Democratic theories, he argues, vaguely assert that the public can act competently to direct public affairs and that the functioning of government is the will of the people, but Lippmann dismisses such notions of the capacities of the public as a fiction.

Amanda Frame rated it really liked it Apr 14, Their relations to a problem are radically different. They do not direct continuously political affairs; instead, they occasionally mobilize in majorities to support or oppose the people who actually govern. The philosophies made me sick to my stomach because they are elitist and imply that The People don’t have rights because they’re too stupid to operate as a group.


In an era disgusted with politicians and the various instruments of “direct democracy,” Walter Lippmann’s “The Phantom Public “remains as relevant as ever.

The Phantom Public

Only the insiders can make decisions, not because he is inherently a better man but because he is so placed that he can understand and can act.

The public, however, moves to such action not by its own volition but by being led there by the insiders who can identify and assess the situation for them. Mark Whipple – – Sociological Theory 23 2: It reveals Lippmann at a time when he was most critical of the ills of American democracy.

Political Theory in Social and Political Philosophy categorize this paper.

Mar phanrom, Eric Gulliver added it Shelves: Sign in to use this feature. Thanks for telling us about the problem. As more and more Americans are inclined to become apathetic to the political system, this classic will be essential reading for students, teachers, and researchers of political science publid history.

He came close in this book to questioning whether citizens can possibly make rational, democratic decisions. Carolyn rated it it was amazing Nov 26, Is the Public’s Ignorance of Politics Trivial? Return to Book Page.

Ibraham rated it really liked it Jul 08, Lippmann challenges the core assumption of Progressive politics as well as any theory that pretends to leave political decision making in the hands of the people as a whole. Find it on Scholar. However, I thinks its wise to read a view point other than your own. Mar 07, Margie rated it did not like it Recommends it for: Jennifer Bernstein rated it really liked it Sep 13,