- What reasons does Alexis de Tocqueville give for calling parties a "necessary evil?" Compare de Tocqueville's opinion of parties with what George Washington says in his farewell address. Whose opinion do you support? Why?
- According to de Tocqueville, what is at the root of the differences between political parties? What is remarkable to him about the development of parties in the United States compared to other parts of the world?
- Why does de Tocqueville say the Federalists were able to gain power even though they were in the minority? What factors helped Jefferson and the Democratic-Republicans gain control? How did that affect the Federalists as a party?
- Why does de Tocqueville say Americans want political parties? What makes it hard for them to develop?
- How do economic situations affect what party people support?
de Tocqueville, Alexis, Democracy in America, "Chapter X: Parties In The United States," 1835. Courtesy of Project Gutenberg