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What's the Civil in Civil Society? Robert Putnam's Italian Republicanism


  • Mouritsen, P.


Putnam's civil society is the idea that good government performance aas well as economic development is a product of 'civic community', i.e. the networks of trust, reciprocity, and habits of co-operation that arise in the associational micro-spheres of civil society such as the soccer club, the Lion's Club, or the choral society. The paper begins with a short exposition of Putnam's main theses. It then looks at the republican tradition to which Putnam refers, preliminarily pointing out a degree of convergence with its several dimensions, but also - under four different headings - the crucial points of divergence. These four 'replubican disputes' are then examined and the discussion summarised.

Suggested Citation

  • Mouritsen, P., 2001. "What's the Civil in Civil Society? Robert Putnam's Italian Republicanism," Papers 2001/4, European Institute - Political and Social Sciences.
  • Handle: RePEc:fth:europs:2001/4

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    JEL classification:

    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • Z10 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - General
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification


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