The aim of the Tocqueville Forum is to foster an intellectual community centered on the study of the ideas and principles of American democracy, as well its influences and dialogues with other traditions. In the spirit of Tocqueville, the Forum encourages diverse historical, philosophical, literary, comparative, and empirical approaches to studying questions that are of importance to understanding the nature of American democracy. The scope of these questions is broadly conceived and multifaceted.
This enterprise is built on the long tradition of teaching political philosophy and American political thought in NIU's Department of Political Science. A generation ago, Martin Diamond, Herbert Storing, and Morton Frisch established NIU as a leader in American political thought. Larry Arnhart (Presidential Research Professor Emeritus) and Gary Glenn (Presidential Teaching Professor Emeritus) continued to build upon the foundation of the first generation of scholars in political philosophy and American political thought.