Ernest Gellner was an outstanding theorist of modernity and a rare breed among late twentieth century scholars. He made major contributions in very diverse. Ernest André Gellner (9 December – 5 November ) was a philosopher and social anthropologist, cited as one of the world's "most vigorous. Ernest Andre Gellner was born in Paris on 9th December , the son of a Jewish lawyer from Czechoslovakia. The family lived in Prague until the German.


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One regret, he told me recently, was that he couldn't quite manage to down the prodigious amounts of beer necessary for effective 'participant observation' among contemporary Bohemian villagers. Gellner did ernest gellner establish a school though, like Popper, whose influence he always acknowledged, he did attract some ernest gellner and dedicated followers.

Ernest Gellner - Wikipedia

He did not always find it easy to accept the mundane pressures of an academic department, particularly in Cambridge where an archaic administrative system imposed very heavy demands.

Indeed Cambridge was in some respects ernest gellner disappointment: Yet he settled well in the end, enjoyed his collaboration with archaeologists, and the ernest gellner and books continued to flow.

As at the LSE, he inspired the loyalty and affection of staff as well ernest gellner students. He was not one to suffer fools gladly, and occasionally visitors to the department were deceived by the reserved, even taciturn welcome they received.

Ernest Gellner - Wikiquote

Ernest gellner Gellner hated pomposity, and the dry humour was never far away: Having distilled the key message of a visitor's talk, he would enjoy changing the subject altogether - perhaps to chess, or to the parlous state of the English soccer team. Gellner, Grove, 39 This is moving towards a 'disenchanted' ernest gellner which is an ideal background for orderly science and orderly capitalism.

Gellner has a second line of argument which does not focus on the nature of religion, but on its power in relation to the State. Puzzling on how mankind escaped from the joint domination of priests and kings, Gellner began to develop the idea that it was because ernest gellner two fell out.

The 'normal' situation in agrarian civilizations was described by Durkheim, who 'sketched out what is really the generic social ernest gellner of agro-literate societies, namely government by warriors and clerics, by coercers and by scribes.


In his version, the two ruling strata ha ppen to be conflated, and top clerics were meritocratically selected from the authorized thug class. Gellner quotes David H ume's explanation for the toleration in England or Holland; 'if, among Christians, the English and the Dutch have embraced principles of toleration, this singularity has proceeded from the steady resolution of the civil magistrate, in opposi tion to the continued efforts of priests and bigots.

The key, Gellner suggests, may have been in ernest gellner stale-mate between a powerful Church and a powerful State, both seeking a monopoly yet neither able ernest gellner obtain it.

Gellner's theory of nationalism - Wikipedia

Priests helped us to restrain thugs, and ernest gellner abolished themselves in an excess of zeal, by universalizing priest-hood. First Canossa, then the Reformation.

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Yet in their battle with their co-religionists of the national Churches, ernest gellner with the State, they finally preferred a compromise. Seeking for tolerance for themselves, they had to give it to others.

Ernest Gellner

There ernest gellner an 'ideological stalemate'. If Calvinism was too successful, as in Scotland or Geneva, it could destroy the liberty needed for capitalist development just as effectively as the Counter-Reformation. It was only where it made some progress, but ernest gellner was checked and fused with alternative traditions that, like a moderate dose of d isinfection, it cleaned out the system.


In England and Holland there were the checks to prevent its total victory. The English continued ernest gellner tradition, represented by Becket, of a Church prepared to stand up against the State but not pre pared to enter into an agreement to dominate.

The separation of religion and politics is one of the central constituents of modernity and it was achieved by accident and through a dynamic tension and balance of forces of an unusual kind and over a long period. The second part of Gellner's explanation lies in the relation between the political and ernest gellner economic.