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Lecture 4

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Political Science

Lecture 4 notes POLC97H3 Prof. Masri January 31 2013 Humorous Observations: - At 11am, there’s only 8 (including me) people plus the professor in today - Cold weather aside, seriously people - People start filling in, one every so often, until 10 after - The introduction slide still says “11-11”, nice to see his attention to detail - He is still sickly, best to keep distance - More than likely he will recap last week, a lot of repetition - Strange sounds coming from outside - Q/A period is taking up more time than it should, considering that we are still covering information from last week - Just as expected, not what was intended was actually covered, another overlap for next week Today: - Going to continue our discussion on civil society - Later on will talk about Last week: - In many parts of the world, it is believed that civil society will lead to democratization Democratization and civil society - Does civil society necessarily lead to democracy? - What happened in Russia in the last 10-12 years? o The rise of Putin o Introduction of Medvedev as Prime Minister - Not all countries in EE transitioned into full democracy - Are all civil society organizations liberal and democratic? - Is the KKK slang for democracy, are they civil society? - Civil society is a very broad topic, includes a wide variety of groups - European and Latin American: empirical studies Civil Society in the Middle East - Is it an alien concept? o Yes: o No: - There is a history of voluntary association in the middle east - Even further back, a number of movements of association that were beyond the family - Strong or weak, effective or not effective, it does exist Approaches to Civil Society in the Middle East - Three approaches: o 1: Liberal Normative  The existence of a strong society is correlated to a strong democracy  Normative, meaning “something people ought to achieve/aspire to”  Civil society is western-focused  Definition excludes Islamic organizations  Conclusion: civil society is small and weak o 2: Revisionist approach  Large number of organizations  Doesn’t look at the group’s goal or mantra  Strong and active organizations of civil society  Mostly islamist groups  Civil society does not have to be liberal or democratic  Are not generally conducive to democracy o 3: Empirical studies  Studying civil society under authoritarian rule is different than under democracy  Authoritarian constraints, autonomy is limited  Any nation in its head of government has complete control over state power  Civil society organizations are the creation of the regimes (GO
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