I jumped at the chance to shepherd this collection. This was personal for me. In the past, when I had prepared to teach courses on political leadership, I had come up with a dearth of recent scholarly attention to the topic.
Perhaps my perspective on politics and leadership exacerbated the difficulty of my search. I had in mind a politics that touched all aspects of power and authority in our lives (not just government), encouraged the moral imagination, and affirmed human agency that could make the future better than the present. I searched with limited success for material that would explain how all of us shape and are shaped by politics. My perspective on leadership may have also hindered my search. I had in mind the simple notion of taking initiative on behalf of shared values. I found too little material about leadership that extended beyond the spectacle of authority and its assumption of hierarchy. I wanted to explain that each of us, regardless of our place in a hierarchy, has a calling to lead - to act on behalf of our moral imagination. Editing this volume permitted me the chance to develop the material I sought. I (as well as other teachers) no longer have a shortage of material relating politics and leadership with each other.
From the Introduction
"This is an extraordinary tour de force that brings together the best thinkers on political and civic leadership studies. If there is one leadership reference book that should appear on your bookshelf, this is it!"