I urge all nonprofit leaders to read Civil Society by Michael Edwards. Mike’s book includes the following: Review of what the term means and various models of the term. Analysis of how well we are doing promoting and building civil society. History of where we have been (deToqueville, for example), what’s happened and happening in Eastern Europe, Africa, Asia. And good ideas about what to do next.
Here are some comments from the book, to tempt you:
– “Civil society is simultaneously a goal to aim for, a means to achieve it, and a framework for engaging with each other about ends and means.”
– Who is “in” and who is “out” of civil society, e.g., associations (the nonprofit sector), politics, government
– Civil society creates a good society – but who decides what a good society is?
– Role of the public sphere in civil society
– Role of government and politics in civil society
– Importance of pluralism and equal access and speaking truth to power (and why inequality, discrimination, and fundamentalism are enemies of the common good and civil society)
– And so much more…Read this book NOW!