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The State Of Democratic Theory

Author: Ian Shapiro
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400825899
Size: 40.45 MB
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What should we expect from democracy, and how likely is it that democracies will live up to those expectations? In The State of Democratic Theory, Ian Shapiro offers a critical assessment of contemporary answers to these questions, lays out his distinctive alternative, and explores its implications for policy and political action. Some accounts of democracy's purposes focus on aggregating preferences; others deal with collective deliberation in search of the common good. Shapiro reveals the shortcomings of both, arguing instead that democracy should be geared toward minimizing domination throughout society. He contends that Joseph Schumpeter's classic defense of competitive democracy is a useful starting point for achieving this purpose, but that it stands in need of radical supplementation--both with respect to its operation in national political institutions and in its extension to other forms of collective association. Shapiro's unusually wide-ranging discussion also deals with the conditions that make democracy's survival more and less likely, with the challenges presented by ethnic differences and claims for group rights, and with the relations between democracy and the distribution of income and wealth. Ranging over politics, philosophy, constitutional law, economics, sociology, and psychology, this book is written in Shapiro's characteristic lucid style--a style that engages practitioners within the field while also opening up the debate to newcomers.

The Real World Of Democratic Theory

Author: Ian Shapiro
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400836833
Size: 23.58 MB
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In this book Ian Shapiro develops and extends arguments that have established him as one of today's leading democratic theorists. Shapiro is hardheaded about the realities of politics and power, and the difficulties of fighting injustice and oppression. Yet he makes a compelling case that democracy's legitimacy depends on pressing it into the service of resisting domination, and that democratic theorists must rise to the occasion of fashioning the necessary tools. That vital agenda motivates the arguments of this book. Tracing modern democracy's roots to John Locke and the American founders, Shapiro shows that they saw more deeply into the dynamics of democratic politics than have many of their successors. Drawing on Lockean and Madisonian insights, Shapiro evaluates democracy's changing global fortunes over the past two decades. He also shows how elusive democracy can be by exploring the contrast between its successful establishment in South Africa and its failures elsewhere--particularly the Middle East. Shapiro spells out the implications of his account for long-standing debates about public opinion, judicial review, abortion, and inherited wealth--as well as more recent preoccupations with globalization, national security, and international terrorism. Scholars, students, and democratic activists will all learn from Shapiro's trenchant account of democracy's foundations, its history, and its contemporary challenges. They will also find his distinctive democratic vision both illuminating and appealing.

Civil Society And Democratic Theory

Author: Gideon Baker
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134524064
Size: 32.24 MB
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This book introduces radically alternative models of civil society that have been developed outside the liberal democratic frame of reference, models which suggest that civil society does offer new and non-statist democratic possibilities. Drawing on a wide range of civil society theory-practice from Eastern Europe and Latin America (including the Zapatistas in Mexico), and from visions of global civil society too, this book is uniquely positioned to consider the questions posed by these alternative voices for democratic theory and practice. * Are there alternatives to the liberal democratic vision of civil society? * Is a democracy located in civil society rather than the state either possible or desirable? * How and why has the concept of civil society come to be used so widely today? * Can global civil society further the struggle for democracy initiated by national civil societies?

Democratic Theory And Causal Methodology In Comparative Politics

Author: Mark I. Lichbach
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107025818
Size: 10.85 MB
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Barrington Moore bequeathed comparativists a problem: how to reconcile his causal claim of "no bourgeoisie, no democracy" with his normative "dream of a free and rational society." In this book, Mark I. Lichbach harmonizes causal methodology and normative democratic theory, illustrating their interrelationship. Using a dialogue among four specific texts, Lichbach advances five constructive themes. First, comparativists should study the causal agency of individuals, groups, and democracies. Second, the three types of collective agency should be paired with an exploration of three corresponding moral dilemmas: ought-is, freedom-power, and democracy-causality. Third, at the center of inquiry, comparativists should place big-P Paradigms and big-M Methodology. Fourth, as they play with research schools, creatively combining prescriptive and descriptive approaches to democratization, they should encourage a mixed-theory and mixed-method field. Finally, comparativists should study pragmatic questions about political power and democratic performance: In building a democratic state, which democracy, under which conditions, is best, and how might it be achieved?

Innovating Democracy

Author: Robert E. Goodin
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191563307
Size: 53.81 MB
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In recent years democratic theory has taken a deliberative turn. Instead of merely casting the occasional ballot, deliberative democrats want citizens to reason together. They embrace 'talk as a decision procedure'. But of course thousands or millions of people cannot realistically talk to one another all at once. When putting their theories into practice, deliberative democrats therefore tend to focus on 'mini-publics', usually of a couple dozen to a couple hundred people. The central question then is how to connect micro-deliberations in mini-publics to the political decision-making processes of the larger society. In Innovating Democracy, Robert Goodin surveys these new deliberative mechanisms, asking how they work and what we can properly expect of them. Much though they have to offer, they cannot deliver all that deliberative democrats hope. Talk, Goodin concludes, is good as discovery procedure but not as a decision procedure. His slogan is, 'First talk, then vote'. Micro-deliberative mechanisms should supplement, not supplant, representative democracy. Goodin goes on to show how to adapt our thinking about those familiar institutions to take full advantage of deliberative inputs. That involves rethinking who should get a say, how we hold people accountable, how we sequence deliberative moments and what the roles of parties and legislatures can be in that. Revisioning macro-democratic processes in light of the processes and promise of micro-deliberation, Innovating Democracy provides an integrated perspective on democratic theory and practice after the deliberative turn.

Political Development And Democratic Theory

Author: Steven J. Hood
Publisher: M.E. Sharpe
ISBN: 9780765614667
Size: 50.23 MB
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This text begins by proposing that comparativists need to consider democracy to be a combination of rights and virtues, and that the difficulties of democratic transitions, consolidation, and maintenance are essentially problems relating to balancing rights and virtues in the regime.

From Neo Marxism To Democratic Theory Essays On The Critical Theory Of Soviet Type Societies

Author: Andrew Arato
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1315487713
Size: 54.49 MB
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The essays in this volume trace an intellectual odyssey, a search for a genuinely critical theory. The book begins with the question of why the Frankfurt School as well as other neo-Marxist and post-Marxist analysts, both in the West and in dissident circles in the East, failed to produce a critical theory of Soviet socialism or to establish a dynamic relationship with contemporary social movements. As the political struggle in Eastern Europe intensified, the author of this book disengaged from his own efforts to reconstruct a critical Marxism. Instead, he attempts a reconstruction of democratic theory based on civil society rather than class categories, and with a critical relevance not only to the transition from state socialism but more generally to the universal goal of emancipation.

Election Law And Democratic Theory

Author: David Schultz
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317145291
Size: 29.71 MB
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While numerous books and articles examine various aspects either of democratic theory or of specific topics in election law, there is no comprehensive book that provides a detailed and scholarly discussion of the political and democratic theory underpinnings of election law. Election Law and Democratic Theory fills this important gap, as author David Schultz offers a scholarly analysis of the political principles and democratic values underlying election law and the regulation of political campaigns and participants in the United States. The book provides the first full-length examination of the political theories that form the basis for many of the current debates in election law that structure both Supreme Court and scholarly considerations of topics ranging from campaign finance reform, voting rights, reapportionment, and ballot access to the rights of political parties, the media, and other players in the system. It challenges much of the current debate in election law and argues for more discussion and development of a democratic political theory to support and guide election law jurisprudence.