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Lecture

POLI 231 Lecture Notes - Direct Democracy


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POLI 231
Professor
Arash Abizadeh

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Siéyes
(This lecture contained info on the French Rev of 1789, of
which I had no need to take down, but which may prove
helpful in the Siéyes reading)
Defending equality:
1) Rule of Law
2) Civil Rights
3) Political Power
Thesis: All individuals must be equal before the law (no privileges!)
Justification for the thesis is political:
Society: individuals pursue personal, private affairs
Politics: public affairs; what society holds in common
Privileges therefore create divergent interests -> affects what society holds in
common
Equality is the basis for citizenship; those with privilege are not a part of the
nation
Representation:
believed France too large for direct democracy
must resort to representative democracy
Constitution:
legitimate, in that it comes from the general will of a nation
no external constraints on the nation
General Will: unified, singular
What makes a nation a collective body?
Justifications for political authority: anarchic, liberal, republican... now nationalist
What is the nation?
1) Democratic answer: shared political initiatives (this is also Siéyes' answer.)
2) Linguistic/Cultural
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