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Political Science
Jeffrey Kopstein

Modern Democracy September 16-Lecture Apartheid in South Africa • Regime that was based on race • 1949:The government of SouthAfrica passed the immorality; This made consorting between blacks and whites immoral • 1950- Group areas act was passed; spacial divided black and white SouthAfricans • 1952- The Pass law was passed; this meant that if you were a black SouthAfrican you would need a pass to enter certain areas of the city (ex. Cape Town) • 1954- The resettlement law was passed; This forced black South Africans out of certain areas, most notably Johannesburg • Regime was run on the politics of racial separation segregation: South Africa was socially, politically and economically divided along racial lines • Democracy is still a new phenomenon; It was only twenty years ago that SouthAfrica endedApartheid (systematic racial discrimination) • 1994- non democratic apartheid system ended- only twenty years ago Democracies Appeal Democracy does have tremendous appeal • Sam Huntington- argues that beginning in the 1970's we experienced a global wave of democratic transitions • In 1975 only 4-6 world countries( 29%) were democratic, over the course of the next 35 years we see the number of democracies increase to 114, so that by contemporary times it was about 60% of world countries • We understand the wave of demarcation in different ways, One of the ways that we understand it is that its a function of economic growth • In the post colonial era we saw around the world a wave of economic growth • Democracy tends to do a better job of maintaining political stability;democracies don't fight democracies • During the world war period we learned that if want world peace then we need promote democracy • Generally speaking in the post war period we see a wave of modernization,one of the consequences of modernization (economical and social) is political modernization • In the post war period we see globally a modernization process that has led to the process of democratization around the world Democracy's Virtue What makes Democracy so appealing • The people are whats most important • In democracy you have rights • These rights are: impersonal, inalienable, and often times codified in a constitution Elections • Democracy Virtue rests in these three principles: The people, the rights that are extended to citizens,and the right to vote in or out government • Democracy rejects "traditional forms of government"; Democracy at its core is a participatory policy, We all have a say, We may elect our representatives and/or government but by virtue of our right to vote we are participating in collective decision making • (You have a say, a vote, and that vote is consequential in confirming support or opposition to the government) • The business of governing in a democracy is no longer the business of Kings, the Church,Tribal chief, or the forms of traditional government Virtues • Liberty • In Democracy you have Freedom: • Freedom of the Press • Freedom ofAssociation( you're right to mobilize and associate with others and form collective groups ex. Lobbyist group) • Freedom of Speech • These freedoms are rights: You have to right to defend or oppose the government of the day • You have the right under the principle of liberty to deliberate, argue, and debate,and to forward you own views Equality • The principle of liberty is distributed equally, all citizens are equal regardless or race, gender, sex etc… • In the way in which we execute this right is through voting: You get one vote regardless of class,wealth, race, or gender (If you are a person you get one vote) • Equality is a principle of modern liberalism (fundamentally about the individual, not race, gender, or clan) Rule of Law • The principles liberalism and equality are protected by the rule of law • Democracies are a political system that is governed by the rules of law, which are often times inshrined in the constitution • Ademocracy at its core has to be grounded in the constitution and constitutional rules • Democracy is rule of law, not rule of man Pluralism • One of the core principles of Democracy is pluralism • Liberty+ Equality+ Rule of Law = Pluralism • Pluralism means multiple voices,interests, points views,pluralistic ideals and ideologies • Democracy is basically compromise from its pluralism; how do we create compromise in our politics • Institutionalized uncertainty • Democracy is institutionalized; that is to say repeated with uncertainty • The core of Democracy is elections; Liberty, Equality, Rule of Law, and Pluralism are manifested in your right to vote, therefore Democracy is about elections • Elections give you the right to vote in or out government • Democracy is all about winners and losers, every four years there is a winner and loser • What makes democracy unique and virtuous is the fact that losers are never out, you can loose but you can compete again • If you loose you are not out, thrown in jail,killed, banned, or black listed • Democracy's virtue then is the ability win but the ability to loose and be able to compete again • Example: NDP party in Canada looses a lot but they are always able to compete • What makes democracy virtuous is this institutionalized uncertainty • What makes democracy democratic is the fact that you never know who is going to win, and if you happen to loose you can compete again • Its institutionalized because we do this over and over again, the winners have a chance to win again and the losers have a chance to compete again • The fact is though that there is always uncertainty, you are never sure who is going to win • Democracy has its virtues, there are core principles Liberty, Equality, Rule of Law, Pluralism, that makes a democracy a democracy ( makes it unique from non democratic nations) Democracy's Fragility • Democracy is fragile, it is fought for, it is won, but it can also be taken away • Thailand used to be a model democracy until the coup of 2006 where all political parties were banned and dissidents were banned • Ex. 2- Egypt • Democracy is not and ends of itself its a process • Democracy as Process • Democracies are dynamic, futile, and fragile • Even in the West Democracy today is till very new,we are still undergoing a process of gradual democratization • In 1867 only 11% of the population in Canada could vote (that included white property men) • It wasn't until 1890 that non white and non property men could vote, raising our franchise to 24% • It wasn't unti 1918 that white women could vote • It wasn't until 1960 that Spanish Indians were given the right to vote • It wasn't until 1963 that the universal Franchise act that gave all racial minorities the right to vote • In the United States women gained the right to vote in 1920, racial minorities only gained the right to vote in 1965 • This is very recent history • Democracy is a process; there is no one who will point to the start of democracy in Canada to be 1963, they always point to the founding of the country in 1867 • Democracy is a long term evolutionary process, it if fought for i.e women and racial minorities • Democracy's don't just appear, democracy is a process • There are three dynamics to this process: Building a foundation for Democracy, Choosing Democracy, and making Democracy work Building Democracy's Foundation • The prevailing conventional wisdom is that democracy's foundations are founded upon the the tenants of what we call the Modernization Theory Modernization Theory • It is a theory about how societies modernize • Theory of how societies economically transform themselves, how people within those societies socially transform themselves, and how in the end we end up with a political transformation that is democracy • Modernization theory argues that the very beginning of the modernization process requires an economic transformation • If look back and look at the history of the West we see the transformation from subsistent agriculture to trade; people were farmers, they ate what they farm, they soon realized that they could farm and create a surplus, and by creating a surplus they began to trade • In order trade you need infrastructure: roads, centre square within the town, technology like the wheel, horse drawn carriages,and eventually trains and ship ports • The economic transformation was also about the industrial revolution • It was no longer the labour and strength of the people, but now we see the mechanization of production: first the steam engine, then electricity,and now other forms of electricity • With the industrial revolution we see the growth of the fur, the creation of a company(ies), with the growth of companies we see increase trade • With this economic transformation we then see economic development • As you move from being a subsistent farmer or manufacture to a trader you begin to earn income • As we see in the industrial revolution and the creation of furs and factories we now have workers,who may not necessarily be farming there own farms, but are instead now working for a company and earning wages • With the industrial revolution we see economic growth and with that we see a growing middle class • It is no longer about serfs, peasants, land owners, and the feudal elite, now we actually begin to see an industrial middle class i.e. traders • This leads then to a demographic change • Farms become more modern, as subsistent agriculture producers begin trade they begin to move into the cities, as factories are set up in the city the begin to attract labour surplus and labourers , and they move into the city • Part of this demographic transformation includes female labour market participants, women are now working in factories and as domestic workers • This then results in a Social transformation • become more educatede urban they become more literate,As folks begin to leave the farm they start to seek education and • the church, but instead the tenants of economic productionn the city we see the Secularization of society, no longer governed by • We see a social transformation by which we see the creation of the modern citizen • Modernization theory argues that once you have economic development, a middle class, once you begin to see urbanization, once you begin to see people becoming educated, they will naturally demand more political rights • By demanding more political rights they are not only demanding the rule of
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