October 3rd 2011polisci.docx

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October 3rd 2011
Modern Democracy
- we take democracy for granted
- the apartheid in South Africa
o political, economic and social system
o example of racial segregation
o south African blacks were discriminated against, 80% of the
population (blacks) weren’t allowed to vote.
o Continued until 1994
- Would you go to prison to fight for or defend democracy?
o In 1975 only 29% of countries in the world had democracies
o In 2010 there was a massive increase in democracies, raising to 59%
- As society is modernizing, they will then become politically modernize
- In democratic states, the people(or demos) is sovereign in oligarchies on the
other hand, the few have the position”
Aristotle, the Politics
- “Polyarchy is a political order…in which citizenship is extended to a
relatively high proportion of adults and the rights of citizenship include the
opportunity to oppose the vote out the highest officials in the government”
Robert Dahl on Polyarchy
Democracy’s Virtue:
o Liberty
Being able to say what you think without getting punished for
Our rights to disagree
Liberty allows us to deliberate in democracy, to argue, to
debate through political institutions
o Equality
Not only economic equality
Political equality
As a citizen of democracy, you enjoy the rights of that
No matter the race, gender and wealth, in the political system
we are all equal
In a democracy, we are all equal
Modern liberalism: liberty and equality of the individual
If we fail that we fail ideals of democracy
Law enforces this
o Rule of Law
Violating these rules means you violated the system
o Pluralism
Liberty and equality = pluralism
Multiple interests
Interests lead to job opportunities
Democracy is about compromise against this pluralism
Through elections we put together all interests
o Institutionalized uncertainty
Losers of elections are never in the outs
Democracy is uncertain; not knowing who wins the next
Democracy’s Fragility
- There had been plenty of regimes of democracies where they fall apart
o A total of 53 cases of democratic breakdown
o Half of them return to democracy, the other half don’t
Democracy as a Process
“ So far as I know, citizenship in no country carries it the right to vote. The right to
vote is a conferred right in every case…This parliament says upon what terms men
hall vote…No oriental whether he be Hindi, Japanese or Chinese, acquires the right
to vote simply by the fact of citizenship.” Hugh Guthrie, MP, 1920
- 1920, white women allowed to vote
- 1963, the universal franchise act passed, allowing everyone to vote.
What are the Foundations?
Building Democracy’s Foundation (1)
o Modernization Theory
Economic transformation
As society became more sophisticated, you sold your
In order to trade, we now have infrastructure
Trading system
Railroads/ steam engines/ wooden mill
Industrial revolution
Economic development
Demographic Change
Moving and living longer
Country to city
More participation of women in the labor market
Social Change
Demand for political rights
Rule of law
Have a say in government
The Transition Zone
- modernizing countries = democratic transition
- focus on the public sphere
Bowling Alone
- Putnam
- Modernized societies are democratic societies but modernized societies are
western societies
- Asian values as a set of culture values are hostile to democracies
- Modernization theory argues that economic and social modernization is
important, we also have to have culture modernization
- Are non-western cultures hostile to democracies?
o 27% of transitional cultures end in democracies, regardless of culture
Choosing Democracy (2)
o South Korea- Roh Taw Woo (1987)
Brutal authoritarian regime
If you disagrees about anything, you were either killed or
In the mid 1980s, there’s a massive social globalization