POL218Y5 Lecture 4: POL218(FALL)-LEC4

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11 Feb 2016
said that he wanted to trace the development of 3 institutions through 6 case
he’s using the comparative method to do 2 things:
he’s showing broad general patterns that apply to all countries that
gradually evolve and become liberal democracy * except for China
also wants to identify some of the things that account for differences
3 sets of institutions he wants to focus on
1.the state (did this last week)
2. the legislature
why important?
they limit the power of the monarch
the legislature is important in the development of
democracy because 2 things happen
in the late feudal period, the period of the absolute
monarchies, the monarch predominates
society and the legislator is really light and
almost non existent
as history unfolds, the balance switches and the
legislature becomes more significant and
decreases the power of the monarch
and the role of the executive changes (in many but
not all of the countries)
in other words as these become liberal
countries, not yet democracies, the
executive becomes accountable through
the legislature and in some countries
(parliamentary), the executive is actually
part of the legislature
3. the importance of political parties
wants to talk about them because as democracies unfold; as we
move from liberal societies to liberal forms of gov to more
liberal democratic forms of government, the political parties
become the major instrument for expressing the wishes of
the democratic majority through the electoral process, and
those get reflected in the legislature
In a nutshell, this is what the entire first term is about
Slide: Democracy, Institutions & Political Parties
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Legislature starts out as purely feudal institutions
they have a very diff role in feudal society than they do in modern
liberal society and liberal democracies
and one of the interesting things about institutions is that they don’t have
to be created anew
can take an old and existing institution and convert it to a new purpose
Transformation of legislative institutions
We’re going to be talking about the emergence of the modern legislature
happened first in Britain in 1600s and becomes the model for most
countries but often they don’t follow exactly the same pattern
Emergence of Modern Legislatures
happens first in Britain. becomes model for other countries, although
they go about it differently
Other thing that stands out is American exceptionalism
American Exceptionalism
not in the sense that it's superior, but it breaks the mold and they
reinvent it
came up with the presidential system (1789) and federalism - its
US system, they came up with it. the federal model has a lot
of appeal for other countries
Emergence of Modern Political Parties
once legislatures get established as the vehicles of expression of liberal
will, the will of people, modern political parties begin to emerge
but early political parties are very different than the ones we know today
it’s tied up with the impact of the industrial revolution on society
and politics from the early 1800s onwards and that leads to
the emergence of modern parties and modern party systems
Impact of Industrial Revolution on Democracy
Modern Party Systems
Types of Party Systems
Slide: Introduction of Modern Legislatures
Early legislatures exist in the middle/late feudal periods 13th and 14th century
Introduced in middle ages (14th century onwards
So parliament begins to meet in Britain, the estates general in France, and that
usually the estates or parliament represents the face on social standing:
usually it represents 3 main groups in society
the nobility, who are the pentacle of social and economic power
outside of the king,
the clergy, the church is important because they own huge
amounts of land in these societies and they are represented
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in the houses in the legislature
elements of a urban middle class
thing to rmb. is that cities are small in feudal societies; they
hare relatively poor, but there are small groups,
usually merchants that have some influence and they
gain representation in the legislature
Assemblies of estates, included urban middle class
Transformed existing feudal institutions
Financial pressure was key factor
In feudal society, there's two different versions of feudal legislatures
Two models
One is called the terriorial model, which looks like the British House of
Territorial (British Parliamnent)
people are chosen on the basis of a
district/constituency/riding, which is how society was
Estates (France, Germany- nobles, clergy and 3rd estate)
representation is nationwide
so in the the estates model you usually have 3 houses/3
estates that met separately: the nobility, the clergy
and the third estate which were the urban merchants
there's an arg that suggests that the territorial model is better bc it
leads to more liberal outcomes bc the representative sitting
in the legislature are closer to the people they’re supposed
to represent
the estates model (France and Germany) lag considerably in the
process of liberalization and democratization
Going back to last week’s lecture, going back to how the monarch gradually
gains control over the nobility in the 15,1600s and how the role of the
legislatures of parliament changes in that, and it all revolves around war
making, the cost of war and the need to raise taxation/revenue in order to
support the monarch’s ability to make war in this emerging European state
system in the 15 and 1600s
Sought greater control over public expenditure in exchange for
voting taxes
Key issue in almost all of these countries is the idea that the king
has several ways to get revenue in the feudal period
e.g 1. from their own land/estates
e.g 2 through the sale of offices
e.g 3 they can borrow, which they did heavily
e.g 4 taxation, the best way
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