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Pols 241 week 9 lecture 1 Nov.docx

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Political Studies
POLS 241
Dru Lauzon

Pols 241 week 9 lecture 1 Nov. 5  Howard wiarda’s book o An activist book o Ethno-centric and American centric o Introduction  Argues that there are many definitions and philosophical foundations for democracy.  Maybe we need a broader term instead of democracy?  Need participatory modes of government that can take many forms  Democracy has become trending, its now enjoying some ideological hegemony  Has no competition  Been reified to a certain extent ( it is assumed to be natural- seen by many as the natural social outcome of human evolution)  Has been considered our greatest achievement o Therefore it makes it easy to think that there is an ideal democracy  Different countries have claimed that there democracy is the best.  This is dangerous because it obscures the fact that every democracy has its stereotypes and weaknesses.  A healthier way of looking at this is that every democracy has room for improvement.  People believe democracy is the key to  1) modernity  2) prosperity  3) freedom  Where does democracy come from?  Emeshed in the cultural fabric of the west since ancient Greece o But for most of western history organic forms are the norm. (monarchy, feudal system, aristocracy) o Has some marginal and small example (ex. Iceland but it wasn’t liberal) th th  In Europe liberal democracy was adopted in the 18 -19 century. o Before that they were monarchies  Wiarda’s idea is problematic  Because there is more evidence that the Iroquois confederacy was more influential than Europe on American democracy.  Thus maybe our democracy come more from the first nations.  Democracy was adopted as a response to a certain necessity  2 myth: Democracy was adopted easily in the west o Put down violently… o American civil war=consequences of democratic patterns that did not quite work… o The troubles that countries are enduring by trying to put it into practice…. o However democracy became the norm extremely quickly= its greatest virtue  This part of the problem as it is only 100 years old and yet it feels like forever  It is not hard to learn, it’s the easiest game in town.  The problem is giving people the opportunity for democracy.  How does England adopt Democracy?  Question of necessity o Happens in 1982  Christopher Columbus discovers the new world  England, France,….realize they could make a lot of money by doing something new.  British Emp
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