Political Science and Democratic Culture: Ernst Fraenkel’s Studies of American Democracy

in German Politics and Society
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Reflecting on his academic exile in the United States, the German

political scientist Franz L. Neumann emphasized the cross-fertilization

of ideas as a result of the confrontation of different scientific and

political cultures.1 According to Neumann, the migration of hundreds

of European academics to the United States led to a growing

internationalization of the social sciences and a two-way learning

process. The Europeans became accustomed to the practice of the

American liberal democracy and learned to value its political culture;

émigré scholars, on the other hand, brought with them a different

academic Denkstil and contributed to a more critical self-understanding

of American democratic theory.