Behind the Scenes of WHITE PHILANTHROPY
New Works in the Field / Philanthropy and Historical Research / Philanthropy and Inequality

Behind the Scenes of WHITE PHILANTHROPY

Editors’ Note: HistPhil co-editor Maribel Morey introduces her new book, White Philanthropy: Carnegie Corporation’s An American Dilemma and the Making of a White World Order (2021), and underscores the research methodology at the foundation of the book’s historical narrative.  Earlier this month, my first book, White Philanthropy: Carnegie Corporation’s An American Dilemma and the Making … Continue reading

Epistemic Crises, Then and Now: The 1965 Carnegie Commission as Model Philanthropic Intervention
New Works in the Field

Epistemic Crises, Then and Now: The 1965 Carnegie Commission as Model Philanthropic Intervention

Editors’ Note: Peter Kaufman argues that the 1965 Carnegie Commission that led to the creation of the U.S.’s public television and radio systems can be a model for a philanthropic intervention to address our current epistemic crisis. With lies now so rampant on the Internet, television, and radio – with every printed page, moving image, … Continue reading

Bowling with Trump: The Downside of Social Capital
Uncivil Civil Society

Bowling with Trump: The Downside of Social Capital

Editors’ Note: Alejandro Portes continues HistPhil’s forum on “uncivil civil society.” I have adapted the title of this comment from the classic article by Sheri Berman, “Civil Society and the Collapse of the Weimar Republic” published in 1997. Since that time, several additional studies have documented the close relationship between German associationism and the rise … Continue reading

MALDEF, the Ford Foundation and the Politics of Patronage
New Works in the Field

MALDEF, the Ford Foundation and the Politics of Patronage

Editors’ Note: Benjamin Márquez introduces his new book, The Politics of Patronage: Lawyers, Philanthropy and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, 1967-2000 (University of Texas Press, 2021). The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) is one of the best-known Latino/a political organizations. The scope of its involvement in Latino/a politics is … Continue reading

Lead Zeppelin? A Chance for a Revival of Germany’s Third Sector
Current Events and Philanthropy

Lead Zeppelin? A Chance for a Revival of Germany’s Third Sector

Editors’ Note: Thomas Adam highlights an important recent court case in Germany that has the potential to transform the nation’s philanthropic sector. Over the course of the nineteenth century, German civil society experienced a remarkable expansion in the absolute numbers of, and in the assets given to, foundations and endowments. Wealthy Germans created endowments that … Continue reading

Frederick Douglass and the Political Theory of Dirty Money
New Works in the Field / Philanthropy / Philanthropy and Historical Research

Frederick Douglass and the Political Theory of Dirty Money

Editors’ Note: Emma Saunders-Hastings introduces her new article in American Political Science Review on Frederick Douglass and his political theory of ‘dirty money.’ In 1844, the newly-formed Free Church of Scotland sent a fundraising mission to the United States. It raised about £3,000, largely from southern Presbyterian donors. Abolitionists in the United States and abroad … Continue reading

Why Early American Fears about Civil Society Still Matter
Uncivil Civil Society

Why Early American Fears about Civil Society Still Matter

Editors’ Note: Kevin Butterfield continues HistPhil’s forum on “uncivil civil society.” Historians and social scientists studying the civil society of the early United States have rediscovered fears and anxieties within the much-celebrated notion of Americans as a “nation of joiners.” The emerging world of mutual aid organizations, reform societies, political clubs, and voluntary associations of … Continue reading

MacKenzie Scott, the Giving Pledge, and Rival Discourses of Billionaire Philanthropy
Philanthropy in the News

MacKenzie Scott, the Giving Pledge, and Rival Discourses of Billionaire Philanthropy

Editors’ Note: Hans Peter Schmitz, George E. Mitchell, and Elena M. McCollim introduce their research on the Giving Pledge, and analyze how one of its most prominent signatories, MacKenzie Scott, poses a challenge to the discourse surrounding philanthropy it most often advances. During the Covid-19 pandemic, MacKenzie Scott accompanied three rounds of billion-dollar donations to … Continue reading

The Stakes of Americans For Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta
Current Events and Philanthropy / Nonprofit legal history

The Stakes of Americans For Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta

Editors’ Note: Legal scholars Sarah C. Haan and Faith Stevelman assess the significance and consequences of the recent Supreme Court ruling on nonprofit disclosure, Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta. On July 1st, in Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta (AFPF), a splintered Supreme Court majority invalidated California’s right, as a perquisite to in-state fundraising, … Continue reading

Introducing AMATEURS WITHOUT BORDERS
New Works in the Field

Introducing AMATEURS WITHOUT BORDERS

Editors’ Note: Allison Schnable introduces Amateurs without Borders: The Aspirations and Limits of Global Compassion (University of California Press, 2021). This is Schnable’s recently-published book examining the rise of new actors in the international development world: volunteer-driven grassroots international nongovernmental organizations.  In 1968, the radical priest and social critic Ivan Illich addressed a conference of North … Continue reading

Thoughts on Uncivil Civil Society 2021: Imperiling, and Defending, Democracy in the United States
Uncivil Civil Society

Thoughts on Uncivil Civil Society 2021: Imperiling, and Defending, Democracy in the United States

Editors’ Note: Nancy Rosenblum continues HistPhil’s forum on “Uncivil Civil Society.” ‘Civil society’: the phrase comes with built-in praise and promise. The crowded sphere of voluntary associations standing between public political life and private affairs is defined as sociable and civil. What civic education in public schools is for children, civil society is for promoting … Continue reading

Revisiting “Civil Society and the Collapse of the Weimar Republic”
Uncivil Civil Society

Revisiting “Civil Society and the Collapse of the Weimar Republic”

Editors’ Note: Sheri Berman continues HistPhil’s forum on “Uncivil Civil Society,” revisiting her seminal article, “Civil Society and the Collapse of the Weimar Republic” in World Politics. In 1997 I published an article entitled “Civil Society and the Collapse of the Weimar Republic” that challenged a growing consensus on the part of academic and non-academic … Continue reading

What’s Civil about Civil Disobedience?
Uncivil Civil Society

What’s Civil about Civil Disobedience?

Editors’ Note: Erin Pineda continues HistPhil’s forum on ‘Uncivil Civil Society,’ examining the civil dimensions of civil disobedience and their relation to our conceptions of civil society. The details hardly need rehearsing: on the afternoon of January 6, 2021, hundreds of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol building, mobilized by the belief that the recent … Continue reading

The Limits of the Bob Jones decision: why we shouldn’t rely on the IRS to police uncivil civil society
Nonprofit legal history / Uncivil Civil Society

The Limits of the Bob Jones decision: why we shouldn’t rely on the IRS to police uncivil civil society

Editors’ Note: Lloyd Hitoshi Mayer continues HistPhil‘s forum on ‘Uncivil Civil Society,’ highlighting the challenges in turning to the contrary-to-fundamental-public-policy doctrine laid out in the 1983 Bob Jones University Supreme Court case as a means of policing uncivil civil society. In a recent article, Zachary B. Pohlman and I consider the application to churches of … Continue reading

Revisiting ‘Bad Civil Society’
Uncivil Civil Society

Revisiting ‘Bad Civil Society’

Editors’ Note: Simone Chambers and Jeffrey S. Kopstein kick off HistPhil‘s online forum on “Uncivil Civil Society,” revisiting an important article they wrote on the topic two decades ago. The “Uncivil Civil Society” forum will examine challenges to the neo-Tocquevillian strain of thinking that poses strong links between civil society and civil, liberal, and democratic … Continue reading

Philanthropy in the Empire of Pain
Current Events and Philanthropy / New Works in the Field / Philanthropy in the News

Philanthropy in the Empire of Pain

Editors’ Note: Benjamin Soskis reviews Patrick Radden Keefe’s Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty. For a few weeks each summer for the last decade or so, one of my daughters has attended camp at the Smithsonian Institution. That meant that many July mornings and afternoons, when I was dropping off or … Continue reading

The Charitable Solicitation Context of Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Beccerra
History of Anonymous Giving / Nonprofit legal history / Philanthropy in the News

The Charitable Solicitation Context of Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Beccerra

Editors’ note: Joseph Mead situates the pending Supreme Court case Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Beccerra within the broader history of efforts to regulate charitable solicitation. The Supreme Court will soon decide a case with potentially significant implications for regulating nonprofits, Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Beccerra. In the upcoming case, two nonprofits have challenged … Continue reading

Early Amnesty International and the Art of Foreign Relations
Nonprofits and Historical Research

Early Amnesty International and the Art of Foreign Relations

Editors’ Note: This post, from Swati Srivastava, is adapted from her article, “Navigating NGO-Government Relations in Human Rights: New Archival Evidence from Amnesty International, 1961-1986,” recently published in International Studies Quarterly. In 1961, when Amnesty International was founded, it entered a daunting international landscape for human rights. After World War II, the international community passed … Continue reading

The Biden Partnerships Plan is Faith-Based Initiative 5.0
Current Events and Philanthropy / Philanthropy in the News

The Biden Partnerships Plan is Faith-Based Initiative 5.0

Editors’ Note: Stanley Carlson-Thies provides historical background for President Biden’s recent (re-)establishment of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. President Biden by Executive Order 14015 (Feb. 14, 2021) created a White House office to promote government partnerships with civil society organizations, both religious and secular, to maximize the effectiveness of services for … Continue reading