I n this essay, I rely primarily on unpublished documents from the Rockefeller Foundation Archives as well as the annual reports of the Ford Foundation and the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) to show that rather than being in a torpor, political theory in the 1950s was a large and eclectic ﬁeld, marked by contest and rapid change. I focus on the Rockefeller Foundation’s policy making for its program in Legal and Political Philosophy (LAPP), the largest grant program for political theory in the 1950s, both to see how the Foundation justiﬁed the creation of the program and how it deﬁned its scope. I argue that when faced with the task of settling on a working deﬁnition of “political theory” for the purpose of awarding grants, the Foundation’s ofﬁcers and the academics who assisted them opted, after prolonged debate, for an eclectic deﬁnition of political theory. I read the emergence of this eclectic deﬁnition of political theory, however, not as evidence of paciﬁc pluralism but as an attempt to contain some of the new challenges to the ﬁeld by incorporating them into it, albeit in a subordinate position.
WMU ScholarWorks Citation
Hauptmann, Emily, "From Opposition to Accommodation: How Rockefeller Foundation Grants Redefined Relations between Political Theory and Social Science in the 1950s" (2006). Political Science Faculty Publications. 3.
Hauptmann, E. (2006). From opposition to accommodation: How Rockefeller Foundation grants redefined relations between political theory and social science in the 1950s. American Political Science Review, 100(4), 643.