What follows is dedicated to my parents, who made these pages possible:
Charles Drekmeier, 2017
After finishing high school and just having turned 17 years old in the 
fall of 1944, Charles left for the university. Chicago was known as 
intellectual and innovative. Robert Maynard Hutchins, the university's 
president, had designed a program allowing students to complete their 
bachelor's degree in just two years instead of the usual four. This was 
the reason Charles chose Chicago. He hoped to have a B.A. before he was 

His favorite professor at Madison was Robert Reynolds. "He was very 
popular, which was not always true of specialists in medieval economic 
history. He would call us in to talk individually about the course even 
though he had 200 students. He inspired my later teaching."

"One of the things I learned in the Army was to talk with people and 
then discover we were talking from different premises," he concluded. 
"It was like being in a different country. I discovered the self is 
more like a set of performances where you have to reconcile yourself 
to something different from time to time."

"If you play the flute, you meet a lot of girls because it's basically 
a woman's instrument," he noted. He dated several girls at UW, 
including one he had known from high school in Beloit, but there 
were no big romances. "I was still in my teens," he explained.

"Florence made me think of the ways of governing, with the merchant 
class once supporting artists," Charles noted. "There was a lopsided 
distribution of power in those Italian cities, a contest between the 
ecclesiastical and the developing merchant class for political control. 
New forms of power suggest lively tensions in social structure. Those 
themes culminated in my later work on status, class and self."

He studied political theory with Franz Neuman and Robert McIvor. The 
political science courses turned out to not interest him that much -
except for Henry Steele Commager's constitutional law course. He was 
in classes from early morning to early evening. He would often find 
himself auditing a course that was more exciting than those he was 
taking for credit. He attended classes taught by anthropologist 
Margaret Mead, literary critic Lionel Trilling, art historians Meyer 
Schapiro and Jacob Rosenberg and sociologists C. Wright Mills and Robert 
Lynd. "The best lecturer was Gilbert Highet. The least inspirational 
was Jacques Barzun. Across the street I could listen to Reinhold Niebuhr 
and, when his English could be deciphered, Paul Tilich. I had a lot of 
energy and I wanted to learn as much as I could. I had interests in 
literature, politics, sociology, art history and philosophy... I felt 
that worlds were opening before me. Perhaps the most profound moment 
was a presentation by Neuman's friend, Herbert Marcuse, on dialectics. 
(Many years later, Marcuse would become my friend.) I decided my 
interest in social theory could best be pursued by focusing on 
intellectual history. It induced me to move from government study to 
history and I gravitated to Commager, author of 'The American Mind,' 
which would become a seminal book on American intellectual history 
along with Merle Curti's 'The Growth of American Thought.' I had 
studied with Curti at Wisconsin. I had been caught up in Commager's 
approach to literary and historical figures in American history, but 
he wanted me to weather something more rigorous and recommended that I 
write my master's thesis on James Coolidge Carter and the codification 
of New York common law." Instead, Charles ended up writing his master's 
thesis for another professor on "the sociology of legal philosophies of 
the Gilded Age and how changes in laws were related to the distribution 
of wealth and economic development.

"I took a girl from Skidmore on a date to hear Mahler's 8th Symphony 
("The Symphony of 1,000") conducted by Leopold Stokowsky at Carnegie 
Hall," he said. "There was an expanded orchestra, a brass choir and 
several hundred human voices distributed around the hall. The music 
was so overpowering I felt my date shudder. Maybe there are spiritual 

When Charles and the Fulbright contingent arrived in India in 1953, 
only a few years after its independence and partition with the newly 
formed Pakistan, it was a country still recovering from the 
assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. Charles witnessed an ancient caste 
system, with four main groups and many subgroups, structured in social 
interactions. Enmity between Hindus and Muslims was still raw. Some 17 
languages were spoken in India, Aryan-based in the north, Dravidian in 
the south. Poverty was widespread.

"It seemed to be the occasion for me to think more deeply about my 
interest in social theory. Under Parsons' tutelage was I moving too 
far from my University of Chicago moment of Marxian revelation? Are our 
social relations (the range of structures from the institutional to 
the personal attitudinal level) more influenced 'from below,' so to 
speak, from economic factors and forces, than 'from above,' our 
beliefs and other 'ideational' aspects of our lives? This distinction, 
which I would later question, had been germinating for more than a year."

"That incident reminded me of another many years later when I was 
chairing a discussion of false consciousness which featured Herbert 
Marcuse and several others at Stanford. A half hour into the discussion 
Marcuse whispered, 'There's only water here. Can you produce some scotch?' 
The hall was full and there were students squatting along the wall behind 
us. I motioned to one of the older ones, who came over. I asked if he was 
able to buy alcohol and gave him $10 for a small bottle of scotch. When 
he eventually returned (Stanford does not make such purchases convenient)
Marcuse, refueled, continued on in great form."

"It was out of this tension between structural functionalism and 'critical' 
Marxism that my own resolution evolved. I became a 'critical theorist.'"

"My dissertation theme had been the ramifications of Freudian thought 
for American social science. Eventually, because of time constraints, 
I decided to change it to an expansion of the India work written for my 
Fulbright scholarship. Parsons agreed, but wanted me to include materials 
from Max Weber's treatise on Indian religion. He said he had never seen 
such a radical shift in dissertation projects."

Charles, Margot, Bud McCord and two other faculty members went to Philip 
Rhinelander, the dean of the School of Humanities and Sciences, to propose 
a year-long interdisciplinary seminar, limited to 15 or 20 juniors, to be 
called "Social Thought and Institutions." It fit in with Rhinelander's 
interest in interdisciplinary and innovative approaches. Students could 
major in it but most didn't. The Social Thought Program, as it became 
known, lasted 23 years and over the course of time involved more than 
20 faculty members.

"When I was in Boston, it occurred to me that what was absent from my 
discussion of ancient Indian politics was the dark presence of the caste 
system. My chapters may have doomed eventual broad distribution of my book 
in India." An examination of the caste system was natural and obvious for 
a Western scholarto pursue, but the subject was largely taboo in India 
although constantly present. One Indian "guru" in the United States even 
sought out Charles to chastise him over his conclusions that the caste 
system was antithetical to the development of a modern society. 
Particularly distressing was his treatment of the Bhagavad Gita and King 
Arjuna's caste-bound duties which anticipated 'might makes right' policies.

Just as the Sutter Court house hosted many of the Social Thought seminars 
that Charles and Margot taught, it also entertained and provided a roof
for faculty from other universities visiting Stanford over the years, a 
practice Charles and Margot started in Boston. Among their many 
distinguished houseguests over the years were Parsons, Louis Hartz, Erik 
Erikson, under whom Margot had studied, Carole Pateman, Raymond Williams, 
Marcuse, Paul Baran, who became a good friend for whom Charles snuck 
delicacies into his hospital room when he was recovering from an illness, 
Walter Weisskopf and Nevitt Sanford, among others.

Charles taught Central European political and social theory, "from the 
Reformation to the Idealists, with a lot of Hegel and the Young 
Hegelians leading up to Marx and social democracy." The other Stanford 
professor on campus was a German-born faculty member specializing in 
Kafka. Politically they had little in common."I was teaching below a 
practice room and I could hear the star pianists of the day, including 
Paul Badura-Skoda and Jorg Demos. They were particularly fond of 
Beethoven and Schubert sonatas. It was wonderful accompaniment, 
especially to the theories of Romanticism developing in Europe after 
Beethoven and Goethe."

By 1979, "the Stanford students were a little different from those 
of our first days at the university. The department was becoming more 
known for comparative politics under the auspices of Gabriel Almond. 
The American politics field was reviving, but political theory was 
still seen as something more necessary to a department's prestige 
than to the real world. Maybe today there is a little too much 
response to the real world, with faculty working as consultants and 
associated with 'think tanks.' I'm not sure there was a lot of 
interest in the history of values, which is why I taught political 
theory the way I did," Charles told a Stanford Oral History Project 
interviewer. "For instance, the covenant versus the contract and its 
deep roots in how we think about law and love. Some students were 
really intrigued. They hadn't thought about how important religion 
was before it took so many denominational forms and evangelistic 
departures. Or became insipid."The Social Thought Program, although 
a 'department' with relative independence, didn't fit within the 
confines of departmental lines. The students who signed up for the 
lively give-and-take discussions were more interested in ideas, 
their origins and how they mattered. Charles had always blurred 
departmental lines in his academic studies and interests, and the 
Social Thought Program was the natural culmination of that process. 
Long ago, he had been drawn to interdisciplinary inquiries before 
academia began to shift in that direction, too. Research was changing 
the teaching tradition as universities competed for status and this 
emphasis narrowed professional interests, hindering much further 
cross-disciplinary development."The Social Thought program was 
spirited up until 1976 or 1977 but lost some of its aura when 
student interest in seeing where thoughts would lead began to fade," 
he told the Stanford Oral History Project. "Economic pressures 
encouraged an emphasis on career preparation as opposed to a more 
general humanistic orientation. It affected many areas of Stanford."

"It's true that political science was not considered a boundary-
perforating area of study," Charles noted. "That is changing now. 
But I'm long gone. I may have represented aging forms of protest 
and social analysis. Who's to say? My children, my wife, my 
students and colleagues have helped me with the shifting 
perspectives required to move into the age of new quantifying 
and qualifying procedures and values. But I continue to drag my 
feet as I view the often stultifying seduction of the so-called 
digital age. Modern financial capitalism has many siren calls. 
I'd like to think I'm still tied to the mast of Odysseus' ship."

Memoirs are basically stories. And they can mix the variety of 
narratives (myth to biography) in ways that may prevent our 
seeing patterns that are basic to storytelling. One that persists 
is the odyssey of the assertive individual (he or she is often a 
victimized or unusually adventurous type, confronting the obstacles 
of a culture calcified - usually to the advantage of a favored few). 
This picture of "agency" in opposition to societal structures 
persists in contemporary social theory. If your eyesight is intact 
and I have lived long enough to finish my project on this theme of 
struggle against the hidden constraints of latter-day capitalism 
and consumerism, I hope you will read it. Not a picaresque story,
just an account of the systems in which we have entrapped ourselves. 
Max Weber's 'iron cage" of rationalization is now enlarged so as 
to obscure accountability while making us all responsible for our 
"situation." We might wish to see Wall Street punished (perhaps 
replaced) for the crippling effects imposed on the lives of so many: 
packaged mortgages, inside trading and "takeovers" that inflate 
values, and nobody goes to jail. And, since so many of us have 
pension plans that are Wall Street-invested, we're stuck. But 
there exists an abundance of prescription opiates and celebrities, 
with or without talent or intelligence, who perform (in the arena) 
for our entertainment and distraction.

And so,we ask if there is a kind of "knowing" that takes us beyond 
what we call cognition. Can we find it in that relatively accessible 
discussion in Hegel's "Phenomenology of Mind [Spirit]" of the "master/
bondsman" [lord and servant] relationship? Found in what is sometimes 
understood as a revaluation or reconstituting of the proletariat (or 
its preindustrial equivalent) and sometimes interpreted as a Stoic 
revival of the importance of the master in the "Bildung" education 
of his "apprentice," but may also be seen as a revival of an ancient 
undercurrent of thought, that we really only know that which we have 
made? The master has removed himself too far from the reality of 
objects we produce and, in the seductions of civilization, has become 
himself an "object." What better example of this artifice than the 
"self-made" man in the White House who, in his loss of self-control, 
his limited competence in dealing with affairs of state (as though 
governing is a matter of making deals, has lost the trust of most of 
those who have depended on his office for leadership). He has "made" 
nothing other than real estate transactions. Has our nation replaced 
the farm, the factory and small retail with something that looks 
more like a casino?

There is a somewhat different aspect of the "self" that may have 
invaded these last pages but which provides us with another 
perspective (other than the transforming experience of our 
coming-of-age and finding our independence). This requires a return 
to the "two minds" about the laundry spill. Most of us, I assume, 
when watching a performance are experiencing two stages of action: 
There is the actor presenting him or herself on stage and the 
stage in our heads as we ponder what the actors are experiencing 
other than their own roles. Has the "Stanislavsky method" so 
identified the actor and role that at least for the moment, "self" 
has been retired to the wings? If we can't see this tension in 
our self-perception (on the psychiatrist's couch, in our dealings 
with bosses and "underlings," institutions where we flirt with 
Sartre's "bad faith") it comes home with a certain vengeance when 
we confront the questions raised by children, especially adolescents 
asking us questions about identity we thought we might have buried. 
It is difficult when the hypocrisy so prevalent at most levels of 
our society seems to challenge the "presentational" self with the 
self behind those roles that have become so large a part of us
and which force us into questions of "truth." For many teenagers 
caught up in the commercial appeal of a culture in which everything 
is for sale, "appearance" is reality. And, reality being in question 
by neuroscience and quantum physics as well as philosophies since 
Plato and before him many of the pre-Socratics, we parents either 
fall back on what we take from our own experience or repeat lessons 
of others that have withstood the test of time (whatever that test 
may be). In such uncertain times we may be advised to return to the 
suggestion that we can only know what we have made. This will be 
a challenge to our pedagogical training for creativity and 
responsibility without the crutches and clutches traditional 
schooling provides. Can we return to a pre-digital age, a time of 
direct communication and cooperation?

Hegel's depiction of a base relationship which, at least for some 
readers, suggests the ambiguity of control, feeds Michel Foucault's 
conception of the diffusion of power throughout the international 
and status/role configurations of industrial societies. [At the 
risk of premature disclosure, I see this departure from "official" 
descriptions of authority as ominous, while offering us a needed 
alternative to the "juridical" portrayal of people in liberal theory 
where "rights" are anchored in the protection of property.] 


Has Foucault provided us with a different way of thinking? This 
meditation on the self in its external and internal associations 
is an introduction to the thinking of a conception of the self 
that integrates the individual with the political state in a way 
that challenges the liberal emphasis on the rule of law and the 
juridical individual it implies. Be forewarned. The collective "we" 
will, at first reading of Foucault, have what could be called 
"totalitarian" implications. But you are already aware of the fears 
that "neoliberalism" (which is hard to distinguish from 
neoconservatism) instills in us anything suggestive of socialist 
collectivism. And yet we seem content to allow the suppression that 
governs our lives under the flag of the "market." Although finance 
capitalism, making money from money, is burying the "market," we 
find it hard to give up on individualism, based on competition 
and greed, in exchange for care (welfare). Foucault reminds us 
that in French and German history, this characterized the 
conception of "police." You and I who have been through infantry 
basic training know this conception of "policing the area." That 
is, taking care of our territory. This is a perception different 
from the way of thinking that enshrines protection-–especially 
the protection of property-–at the expense of opportunities to 
realize individual potential. ("Negative" freedom as it has come 
to be called, as opposed to freedoms from want and fear.) More 
immediately, as I read Michel Foucault and this positive "policing" 
function of the state, I ask myself also if this ever-constituting 
"self" is produced in the act of writing. And, more broadly, are 
we always in the act of "objectifying" ourselves? [Sorry about 
these cautionary quotation marks. They signify my own difficulty 
in adapting to what is a different language of mind and body.]
He did not live to spell out the "political" rationale of the 
"administrative state" he opposes to the legalistic state, an 
Anglo-American tradition. It is in that huge body of literature, 
most of which has been written on the subject known as "the 
mirror of princes" (and known perhaps best for the staggering 
refutation of its presuppositions by Machiavelli) that the "care 
of the soul" has entered the discussion. The argument reduces to 
the belief that if the prince is trained in his ethical duties,he 
will inspire his subjects to live with honor and compassion. 
Shortly before his demise in 1984 Foucault announced this 
relatively new departure from his earlier preoccupation with the 
social controls of asylums, prisons and such. He was embarking on 
a new line of inquiry based in "care of the self." (That phrase, 
sometimes referred to as "care of the soul" has a strange ring 
for most of us, and that in itself is strange.) His earlier 
writings had directed our attention to the manner in which 
scientific research had objectified the self. Now we must 
concern ourselves with how we turn ourselves into the "other." 
This self-formation produces a certain confusion: he speaks of 
us becoming "subjects." This transformation is rooted in 
objectification. This draws him closer to the Frankfurt School 
of Horkheimer, Marcuse, et alia, but he prefers to find his 
location in the classical philosophies of the first and second 
centuries and in the spiritual exercises of the fourth and fifth 
centuries, where the self is formulated. The emerging self is 
politicized in ways that could not be known to those classical 
and early Christian theorists. Augustine tells us about his 
deficiencies and waywardness but he is not intent on telling a 
life story. He is glorifying God by way of divine grace working 
on his spirit. The individuality that celebrates one's freedom 
(what we find most notably in Rousseau) is not available to 
description. In the modern age, writing-–especially the memoir–-
becomes in Foucault's terminology a procedure of objectification: 
individual status has become a modality of power (see his 
"Discipline and Punish!"). The self is most clearly constituted 
in the act of writing. More broadly, we are always in the act of 
objectifying ourselves. The memoir can no longer rely on a "stream 
of consciousness."We must place Foucault with those writers early 
in his century, Emile Durkheim, Max Weber and a number of others 
who refused to base their analyses in terms of the enticing 
psychologies gathering strength at the time. The collection of 
Foucault's late lectures ("Technologies of the Self" contains a 
half dozen excellent essays by Vermont professors in attendance. 
Patrick Hutton, a cultural historian, contributes an essay on the 
"unstated presence" of Sigmund Freud, whois not directly discussed 
by Foucault. As with the Frankfurt School, the psyche finds its 
definition in the social institutions in which it is entwined – a 
"collective psychological milieu in which the individual mind is 
immersed." And yet culture is made. The process is creative and 
prescriptive, implying directions and boundaries which, in Freudian 
theory, require constraint and repression. The structural apparatus 
of psychoanalysis provides a busy ego constantly trying to balance 
the constitutionally given drives (id) with the demands of external 
reality and of conscience (superego). Coming to terms with 
precedents from the past, particularly childhood experiences, 
identities are formed. Memoirs, in this line of argument, often 
take the form of recalling formative experiences in the hope 
that this understanding will lead to a reconciliation of these 
conflicts. This "technology" can be likened to the art of memory, 
the retrieving of past experiences. Proust, Mann, Joyce, Woolf, 
Faulkner, Fitzgerald and many others have employed this art – and 
Freud says he has learned from the earlier literature of this genre. 
Foucault, however, is interested in the social institutionalization 
of forms of mental conflict (as manifested in social behaviors). 
How did the definition of insanity emerge in the eighteenth century? 
The management of non-conformism is the subject of his studies of 
prisons, asylums and other institutions that serve to shape mental 
structures. Domination has taken new forms in the so-called age of 
enlightenment. The policing function had been an earlier interest 
of his and in his last years he returned to the more generalized 
need of societies to regulate behavior by means of public or 
partially public agencies. Policing techniques have been 
transformed to produce a more disciplined sense of self: the 
psyche is itself an idea formed to help in this design of 
appropriate behavior. Here he is joined by Norbert Elias' 
elaboration of developing styles of behavioral manners. Old ways 
of acting come to be seen as "embarrassing." This confusion of 
styles of interaction is evidently always with us – as witness our 
uncertainty about the nature and extent of our embarrassment 
over the bullying tactics of President Trump. [See New York Times, 
6/18/17 for comments on the heritage of Erving Goffman on this 
subject.] The establishment of boundaries of regulations and 
"open" activity contributes to a mentality of binary oppositions. 
The process produces forms through which people define 
relationships and also, as a byproduct, definitions of who we are.
This interpretation provides us with an alternative to Freud's 
conception of repression. Identity avoids reference to human 
nature. Or, better put, human nature is the collection of 
institutional and linguistic forms bequeathed to us. But of course,
these may include vocabularies and formalities, etc., of segregation. 
The discourse may transcend the asylum walls and produce a stifling 
discipline of the larger society. In this dissection we are left 
with two conceptions of the self: is it a subjective notion produced 
by our actions and behaviors or an objective reality that we describe 
in our writing? Are we continually remodeling ourselves in line with 
a process that Foucault reclaims from an older idea of "policing" 
as "care of the soul?" Penetrating this way of considering social 
interaction is the Nietzschean view of power – which, in Foucault's 
adaptation shapes our self-knowledge. Power, in the expression of 
the collective power that makes the state, is there to be used for 
our "care" (I wish he had used a term like "well-being"). Hutton 
puts it this way: Whereas Freud asks how our past experience shapes 
our lives in the present, Foucault asks why we seek to discover 
truth in the formal rules that we have designed to discipline life's 
experiences. He calls on us to deconstruct "the formalities through 
which we endlessly examine, evaluate and classify our experiences." 
We might have despaired of ever finding the continuities that seem 
crucial to our autobiography or memoir but here cutting through the 
"formalities" we seem to be on more familiar ground. We must keep 
in mind that memory is essential in Freud's project of self-
discovery. Memory is basic to identity. Foucault does not discard 
the psychoanalytic method but he sees this "archeology" of the 
self as a labyrinth that can get us lost. Memories provide only 
half-truths and these are of questionable value because the psyche 
delivers our own descriptions of ourselves. If this digging into 
our own past produces more discontinuities than a train of 
development it can provide insights into possibilities available 
to us. If there is an ending it is to be found in the belief that 
we can only know that which we have made. We are constantly 
creating forms that in turn provide the meanings essential to our 
human nature. Gertrude Stein's last words in response to her own 
question "What is the answer?" was reportedly "What is the 
question?" Most of us who are not "believers" tend to avoid this 
speculation – or disguise our answer in long-winded elaboration of 
manifold experiences and adjustments over our lifetimes. Foucault's 
answer, which he thinks he shares with the philosophic tradition 
stemming from Kant actually takes the form of a question: What are 
we in our actuality? In studying the relation of thought and practice 
he had come to the conclusion that we achieve our actuality by means 
of the exclusion of certain others – the insane, the deviant and 
criminal. To borrow from Philip Slater, we flush them down the jail 
or the nursing home. Foucault searches for a more positive context 
and finds a significant point of departure in a work dating from a 
decade before the French Revolution by a German writer, J.P. Frank, 
"the first systematic program of public health for the modern state." 
A duty of the state is the care of people's lives – while admitting 
that the state also has the right to kill its criminals and enemies. 
This historical rationality, this life-and-death game, he calls 
"political rationality" and it has its origins in the rationale for 
the idea of a governing state. It embodies specific techniques of 
government which maintained order among its citizens. This concept, 
"reason of state," was defined by Botero (a late 16th century writer) 
as a "perfect knowledge of the means by which states form, strengthen 
themselves, endure and grow." Although Foucault describes "reason for 
state" as a break from both Machiavelli and the Christian tradition, 
Foucault finds substance in Thomas Aquinas, a major author of "the 
mirror of princes." The king's government must be like God's 
governing of nature, "he must lead man towards his finality." That 
finality, says Aquinas, is not physical health, nor wealth and not 
even truth. The king is not a physician, a steward or a teacher. 
What he should be is a leader who will open the way to ultimate 
bliss through this earthly conformity to God's rule. But this way 
of thinking no longer satisfies the early modern need for a 
conception of the state that is not a relation between prince and 
people, as persists in Machiavelli. What was needed were directions 
for reinforcing the state itself. This can be seen as a first step 
toward more varieties in the composition of government. And in the 
literature of the time distinctive characters enter the stage. The 
modern memoir is also born. These "linkages" can perhaps be seen 
is this independent rationality of the state. The state as its own 
rationality contributes, along with the Reformation movements of 
the 16th century, to a search for self-knowledge after the 
Reformation broke the church's dominance over science and all 
other knowledge. By the 17th century, politics could no longer 
find comfort in the rush for kingdoms to establish colonies for 
economic gain, subjecting native peoples to their rule. States now 
compete and governments must view their subjects as a means of 
reinforcing the whole. The other attributes and beliefs are of 
lesser concern. This integration of individuals doesn't take the 
form of an ethical community as in ancient Greek cities, where the 
idea of democracy and a participatory government was first born. 
It depends on new techniques which give form to this new political 
reality. The new "technology" of integration was called "police" 
in France, Polizei in German. Foucault reminds us that the English 
word is something far different. The French theorist, Louis Turquet 
de Mayenne, writing in 1611, says the task of the police is to 
foster civil respect and public morality. He proposed a collection 
of four boards – to look after the productive aspects of life 
(education and the examining aptitudes and tastes are general 
aspects), looking after the poor and other dependents (public 
health, natural disasters, putting people to work), the third 
dealt with commodity production (not the province of the first 
board but of controlling markets and trading), and, last, 
supervising private property and legacies, manorial rights, 
transportation, public buildings, and so forth). The police in 
fact embraced the judiciary functions, the military, the treasury=–
but from the perspective of their relationships-–all that is 
necessary for the smooth operation of the state and the 
coexistence of the individuals who composed it. The former 
feudal power was based in juridical relations (family, status, 
etc.) but now government is dealing with individual people as 
living men and women and not according to juridical status. People 
with sufficient inclination and talent can now write memoirs. At 
least in this initial phase. This new "care of the soul" came to 
embrace religion, morals, health, the maintenance of public 
buildings and roads, public safety, the arts and sciences, trade, 
factories, workers and the indigent. (Foucault compiles this list 
from manuals intended for use by civil servants.) "That was the 
domain of the police, from religion to poor people, through morals, 
health, liberal arts and so on and so on. The author of one such 
manual sometimes limits the police to "everything regulating society." 
Elsewhere Delamare says the police "take care of living" and 
everything pertaining to men's happiness. The indispensable, the 
useful, and the superfluous. The technical project, according to 
Foucault, is "determining the correlation between the utility 
scale for individuals and the utility scale for the state." 
(Sounds almost like the language of today's social science.) In 
this "administrative state" happiness is a requirement for survival 
and growth. I feel certain that the present incoherent state of 
American politics which, in our sham democracy appears almost self-
destructive, will inspire a rethinking of the institutions that 
represent our values. A condition in which a quarter of children 
live in poverty in what is the wealthiest nation, and a small 
fraction of the wealthiest control most of the wealth is not a 
democracy in any sensible definition of the word. Values based 
in the perspective of individualistic self-interest no longer 
inspire the cooperative interaction needed to control air and 
water pollution and general sustainability. National "security" 
will come to be understood in terms of the well-being of citizens 
and their environment and of future generations. Present political 
leadership cautions us to be shy of assigning the safeguarding of 
the "soul" to the collective representation of the state. And yet we 
live lives that are controlled in multiple ways to which we have 
become inured. This subtle collectivism of corporate capitalism has 
been allowed to coexist with vulnerable democratic institutions. 
The competitive market that once provided justification for self-
interested behavior and even provided the model for competitive 
communication ("the marketplace of ideas") no longer makes any 
sense. The welfare state, protective of our health and development, 
is coming. The crisis in healthcare policy is a harbinger. The 
Republican Party's bill to retire or at least revise radically the 
present national health insurance system has produced only a 
stalemated Congress. Perhaps because it was seen by most as an 
ill-advised effort to transfer tax revenues from the poor to the 
wealthy. The time will come, if not already here, when the great 
corporations become more publicly aware of their dependence on 
"externals" (roadways, tax benefits, etc.) including efforts to 
cope with climate change even in cases where profits will suffer. 
As the well-being of members of our community come to be seen as 
basic to the nation's security, we must be wary. There is money 
to be made in keeping us on pills and in therapies. The "health 
management" that has enriched corporations is not the health 
care we see in several Scandinavian countries. The American 
people are deserving of a second emancipation. Let us hope it 
will come without the bloodshed of a century and a half ago. 
The American Constitution can be amended but eventually a broad 
reconstituting may be necessary. The legalistic nature of the 
state will have to accommodate the well-being of citizens. There 
will then be prominence given to "tail-winds" in memoirs. Given 
the aggrandizing spirit that now dominates the nation's capital 
this may not be most propitious moment to champion the strong, 
facilitating state. We must, however, bear in mind that this is 
not the democratic state in either its classical or eighteenth-
century location. Not that our founders share no responsibility 
for our present dilemmas: both the ancients and our own "fathers" 
were willing to overlook the fact that a majority of their 
populations would not be permitted to participate in making 
decisions that would affect their lives. We still invoke in our 
theory courses the justifying concept of the "social contract" 
while conceding to our fellow social scientists "the non-
contractual nature of contract." We admit that this was a 
"tacit" contract – perhaps because the legalistic basis of our 
companion capitalistic society requires a collective commitment, 
now lost in the clouds of hierarchical feudal layering of 
"allegiances." The contractual basis of law had worked well in 
the transition to industrial society and the owner/laborer 
relationship, but the tension and the problem remains. Does wealth 
allow more power at the voting booth? Do we have "one man, one 
vote?" or does this formulation serve to conceal the role that 
money plays? People once disqualified are now allowed to vote but 
hurdles remain. Some people don't meet the often surreal 
requirements imposed on minorities. We are, most of us, aware 
that the current administration is one dominated by moneyed 
interests. Their impact is less visible than the corruption of 
regimes in which elected offices are used to make money, but the 
business mentality and the profiteering incentive still thrive. 
We are blinded in one way or another to the corporate power that 
has, through such devices as the redefining of the state along 
the lines of a business/entrepreneurial model, to the total 
control of our lives through financial complications, 
communication oligarchies, everyday work-place discipline, 
denial of needed health care, and more. The liberal state has 
allowed freedom of expression and protections of privacy and 
property. These are essential political commitments. The state 
must not be allowed to restrict them by means such as 
"classification" that prevents the dissemination of 
information important to the needs of an informed citizenry. 
Constitutions are needed to reconcile these important freedoms 
with those other freedoms (from want and fear) that are life-
enhancing. They are compatible with the well-being and resource 
sustaining purposes of a truly democratic state. Last century's 
experience with fascist and Stalinist dictatorships has made us 
sensitive to the problems that come with large-scale governmental 
action. But we should bear in mind the ideological role that 
"totalitarianism" has played in reconciling us with the problems 
of aggrandizing individualism, of alienation and conformism closer 
to home. There are alternatives to our "condition" that avoid the 
suffocation of repressive dictatorships. In the world to come there 
may be no need to tell about headwinds and tailwinds. Along with 
poignancy and self-celebration the memoir may be lost. Along with 
the need to ask questions which, in our actions we have answers. 
Ulysses hesitates to arrive home. He is afraid of answers. It is 
interesting, at least to me, that we find our "answers" in his 
reluctance. Which is all well and good. But our "condition" calls 
for more than Ulysses and Hamlet can contribute. Who will put the 
progressive case to music? Who will lead us out of the "swamp" 
that President Trump alluded to but found us deeper into its 
horrendous depths?