Nineteenth century French historian, author of Democracy in America


Alexis de Tocqueville - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Alexis-Charles-Henri Clérel de Tocqueville (July 29, 1805-April 16, 1859) was a French political thinker and historian. His most famous works are Democracy in America (appearing in two volumes: 1835 and 1840) and The Old Regime and the Revolution (1856). He championed liberty and democracy. Alexis de Tocqueville observed that it is easier for the world to accept a simple lie than a complex truth. ..."


29 Jul 1805, in Paris, France


16 Apr 1859, in Cannes, France


Subjugating Ourselves, by Sheldon Richman, 7 May 2010
Examines key passages from La Boetie's Discourse on Voluntary Servitude and criticises newspaper editorial writers (with a recent example) for preaching to the people to acquiesce and submit to government
"As I discussed recently, Alexis de Tocqueville thought democracies were prone to despotism, albeit a milder kind, but despotism nevertheless. As he wrote in Democracy in America, people living in democracies 'combine the principle of centralization and that of popular sovereignty ... Every man allows himself to be put in leading-strings, because he sees that it is not a person or a class of persons, but the people at large who hold the end of his chain.'"