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In Search of Civil Society by Nicholas Deakin


In Search of Civil Society by Nicholas Deakin

Civil society as a concept is currently much discussed in the political arena and now frequently referred to in academic texts. But what does it mean in practice and how does it relate to more familiar ideas like voluntary action? This new book by a leading commentator explores the connections between the two and provides a wide range of examples of situations in which civil society has provided an arena for voluntary association and action which has had a real impact on events at local, national and, latterly, the global level.


'Elegantly written, cogently argued and well sourced, this book adds signficantly to the literature on social capital. It deserves to be policy-makers and practictioners as well as by politicians and academics.' - Professor Jimmy Kearney, Voluntary Action 'This book is a useful and accomplished overview of the history and development of civil society and provides a well-defined roadmap to the current debates...essential reading for anyone wishing to understand the issues facing civil society and the contexts in which they arise.' - Third Sector 'The book provides a good overview of many of the important issues relating to civil society and would be helpful for undergraduate and graduate students.' - Douglas Wolfe, University of Oxford, Political Studies'

About the Author

NICHOLAS DEAKIN was Professor of Social Policy and Administration at Birmingham University for twenty years, and has published widely on urban policy and voluntary sector issues. He is currently a Visiting Professor at the Centre for Civil Society, London School of Economics.

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Book Info

Publication date

31st October 2001


Nicholas Deakin

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Palgrave Macmillan


233 pages


Social theory
Social welfare & social services
Political science & theory



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