The Threshold Of Democracy
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|Author||: Josiah Ober,Naomi J. Norman,Mark C. Carnes,Mark Christopher Carnes|
|Editor||: W W Norton & Company Incorporated|
A Norton original in the Reacting to the Past series, The Threshold of Democracy re-creates the intellectual dynamics of one of the most formative periods in western history.
|Author||: Mark C. Carnes,Josiah Ober|
Innovative and engaging, The Threshold of Democracy: Athens in 403 B.C. explores the intellectual dynamics of democracy by recreating the historical context that shaped its evolution. Part of the “Reacting to the Past” series, this text consists of elaborate games in which students are assigned roles, informed by classic texts, set in particular moments of intellectual and social ferment. Issues of the time are sorted out by a polity fractured into radical and moderate democrats, oligarchs, and Socratics, among others.
|Author||: Eric W. Robinson|
|Editor||: John Wiley & Sons|
This book invites readers to join in a fresh and extensive investigation of one of Ancient Greece’s greatest inventions: democratic government. Provides an accessible, up-to-date survey of vital issues in Greek democracy. Covers democracy’s origins, growth and essential nature. Raises questions of continuing interest. Combines ancient texts in translation and recent scholarly articles. Invites the reader into a process of historical investigation. Contains maps, a glossary and an index.
|Author||: Christopher Carey|
|Editor||: Bloomsbury Publishing|
For two centuries classical Athens enjoyed almost uninterrupted democratic government. This was not a parliamentary democracy of the modern sort but a direct democracy in which all citizens were free to participate in the business of government. Throughout this period Athens was the cultural centre of Greece and one of the major Greek powers. This book traces the development and operation of the political system and explores its underlying principles. Christopher Carey assesses the ancient sources of the history of Athenian democracy and evaluates criticisms of the system, ancient and modern. He also provides a virtual tour of the political cityscape of ancient Athens, describing the main political sites and structures, including the theatre. With a new chapter covering religion in the democratic city, this second edition benefits from updates throughout that incorporate the latest research and recent archaeological findings in Athens. A clearer structure and layout make the book more accessible to students, as do extra images and maps along with a timeline of key events.
|Author||: Judith Brett|
|Editor||: Text Publishing|
It’s compulsory to vote in Australia. We are one of a handful of countries in the world that enforce this rule at election time, and the only English-speaking country that makes its citizens vote. Not only that, we embrace it. We celebrate compulsory voting with barbeques and cake stalls at polling stations, and election parties that spill over into Sunday morning. But how did this come to be: when and why was voting in Australia made compulsory? How has this affected our politics? And how else is the way we vote different from other democracies? Lively and inspiring, From Secret Ballot to Democracy Sausage is a landmark account of the character of Australian democracy by the celebrated historian Judith Brett, the prize-winning biographer of Alfred Deakin.
|Author||: Cristina Lafont|
|Editor||: Oxford University Press, USA|
This book articulates a participatory conception of deliberative democracy that takes the democratic ideal of self-government seriously. It aims to improve citizens' democratic control and vindicate the value of citizens' participation against conceptions that threaten to undermine it. The book critically analyzes deep pluralist, epistocratic, and lottocratic conceptions of democracy. Their defenders propose various institutional ''shortcuts'' to help solve problems of democratic governance such as overcoming disagreements, citizens' political ignorance, or poor-quality deliberation. However, all these shortcut proposals require citizens to blindly defer to actors over whose decisions they cannot exercise control. Implementing such proposals would therefore undermine democracy. Moreover, it seems naive to assume that a community can reach better outcomes 'faster' if it bypasses the beliefs and attitudes of its citizens. Unfortunately, there are no 'shortcuts' to make a community better than its members. The only road to better outcomes is the long, participatory road that is taken when citizens forge a collective will by changing one another's hearts and minds. However difficult the process of justifying political decisions to one another may be, skipping it cannot get us any closer to the democratic ideal. Starting from this conviction, the book defends a conception of democracy ''without shortcuts''. This conception sheds new light on long-standing debates about the proper scope of public reason, the role of religion in politics, and the democratic legitimacy of judicial review. It also proposes new ways to unleash the democratic potential of institutional innovations such as deliberative minipublics.
|Author||: Demetra Kasimis|
|Editor||: Cambridge University Press|
Argues that immigration politics is a central - but overlooked - object of inquiry in the democratic thought of classical Athens. Thinkers criticized democracy's strategic investments in nativism, the shifting boundaries of citizenship, and the precarious membership that a blood-based order effects for those eligible and ineligible to claim it.
|Author||: John Thorley|
The fifth century BC witnessed not only the emergence of one of the first democracies, but also the Persian and the Peloponnesian Wars. John Thorley provides a concise analysis of the development and operation of Athenian democracy against this backdrop. Taking into account both primary source material and the work of modern historians, Athenian Democracy examines: * the prelude to democracy * how the democractic system emerged * how this system worked in practice * the efficiency of this system of government * the success of Athenian democracy. Including a useful chronology and blibliography, this second edition has been updated to take into account recent research.
|Author||: Josiah Ober|
|Editor||: Princeton University Press|
This book asks an important question often ignored by ancient historians and political scientists alike: Why did Athenian democracy work as well and for as long as it did? Josiah Ober seeks the answer by analyzing the sociology of Athenian politics and the nature of communication between elite and nonelite citizens. After a preliminary survey of the development of the Athenian "constitution," he focuses on the role of political and legal rhetoric. As jurymen and Assemblymen, the citizen masses of Athens retained important powers, and elite Athenian politicians and litigants needed to address these large bodies of ordinary citizens in terms understandable and acceptable to the audience. This book probes the social strategies behind the rhetorical tactics employed by elite speakers. A close reading of the speeches exposes both egalitarian and elitist elements in Athenian popular ideology. Ober demonstrates that the vocabulary of public speech constituted a democratic discourse that allowed the Athenians to resolve contradictions between the ideal of political equality and the reality of social inequality. His radical reevaluation of leadership and political power in classical Athens restores key elements of the social and ideological context of the first western democracy.
|Author||: Adam Jentleson|
|Editor||: Liveright Publishing|
An insider’s account of how politicians representing a radical white minority of Americans have used “the world’s greatest deliberative body” to hijack our democracy. Every major decision governing our diverse, majority-female, and increasingly liberal country bears the stamp of the United States Senate, an institution controlled by people who are almost exclusively white, overwhelmingly male, and disproportionately conservative. Although they do not represent a majority of Americans—and will not for the foreseeable future—today’s Republican senators possess the power to block most legislation. Once known as “the world’s greatest deliberative body,” the Senate has become one of the greatest threats to our democracy. How did this happen? In Kill Switch, Senate insider Adam Jentleson contends that far from reflecting the Framers’ vision, the Senate has been transformed over the decades by a tenacious minority of white conservatives. From John Calhoun in the mid-1800s to Mitch McConnell in the 2010s, their primary weapon has been the filibuster, or the requirement that most legislation secure the support of a supermajority of senators. Yet, as Jentleson reveals, the filibuster was not a feature of the original Senate and, in allowing a determined minority to gridlock the federal government, runs utterly counter to the Framers’ intent. For much of its history, the filibuster was used primarily to prevent civil rights legislation from becoming law. But more recently, Republicans have refined it into a tool for imposing their will on all issues, wielding it to thwart an increasingly progressive American majority represented by Barack Obama’s agenda and appointees. Under Donald Trump, McConnell merged the filibuster with rigid leadership structures initially forged by Lyndon Johnson, in the process surrendering the Senate’s independence and centrality, as infamously shown by its acquiescence in Trump’s impeachment trial. The result is a failed institution and a crippled democracy. Taking us into the Capitol Hill backrooms where the institution’s decline is most evident, Jentleson shows that many of the greatest challenges of our era—partisan polarization, dark money, a media culture built on manufactured outrage—converge within the Senate. Even as he charts the larger forces that have shaped the institution where he served, Jentleson offers incisive portraits of the powerful senators who laid the foundation for the modern Senate, from Calhoun to McConnell to LBJ’s mentor, Richard Russell, to the unapologetic racist Jesse Helms. An essential, revelatory investigation, Kill Switch ultimately makes clear that unless we immediately and drastically reform the Senate’s rules and practices—starting with reforming the filibuster—we face the prospect of permanent minority rule in America.
|Author||: Peter Mclaren|
This work by one of North America's leading educational theorists and cultural critics culminates a decade of social analyses that focuses on the political economy of schooling, Paulo Freire and literacy education, hip-hop culture, and multicultural education. Peter McLaren also examines the work of Baudrillard as well as Bourdieu's reflexive sociology.Always in McLaren's work is a profound understanding of the relationship among advanced capitalism, the politics of knowledge, and the formation of identity. One of the central themes of this volume is the relationship between the political and the pedagogical for educators, activists, artists, and other cultural workers. McLaren argues that the central project ahead in the struggle for social justice is not so much the politics of diversity as the global decentering and dismantling of whiteness. This volume also contains an interview with the author.
|Author||: Tamika Y. Nunley|
|Editor||: UNC Press Books|
The capital city of a nation founded on the premise of liberty, nineteenth-century Washington, D.C., was both an entrepot of urban slavery and the target of abolitionist ferment. The growing slave trade and the enactment of Black codes placed the city's Black women within the rigid confines of a social hierarchy ordered by race and gender. At the Threshold of Liberty reveals how these women--enslaved, fugitive, and free--imagined new identities and lives beyond the oppressive restrictions intended to prevent them from ever experiencing liberty, self-respect, and power. Consulting newspapers, government documents, letters, abolitionist records, legislation, and memoirs, Tamika Y. Nunley traces how Black women navigated social and legal proscriptions to develop their own ideas about liberty as they escaped from slavery, initiated freedom suits, created entrepreneurial economies, pursued education, and participated in political work. In telling these stories, Nunley places Black women at the vanguard of the history of Washington, D.C., and the momentous transformations of nineteenth-century America.
|Author||: Hans Gersbach|
Could democracy do better? This book presents a vision on optimal democracies and a set of new rules to help achieve them. The monograph follows on the author’s successful book “Designing Democracy” from 2005 and further develops its ideas. While liberal democracies are the best systems of self-governance for societies, they rarely provoke great enthusiasm. Democracies have been known to fail in achieving efficient outcomes and fair distributions of wealth. Moreover, many citizens take the democratic system for granted, simply because they have yet to experience an alternative. This book argues that the potential offered by democracies has not yet been exhausted, and that optimal democracies are both the Utopia for societies and the aim that scientists should commit themselves to making a reality. Furthermore, the book suggests a number of insightful rules to improve the functioning of democracies. “We all know what to do, we just don’t know how to get re-elected after we have done it.” This famous quip by Jean-Claude Juncker perfectly encapsulates the challenge this book takes on: how to redesign our democratic institutions to overcome political short-termism and make our democracies more efficient. Several radical but highly relevant proposals are explored, ranging from long-term incentive contracts for politicians, prediction markets over the outcomes of the next election that could be useful for incentive purposes, minority voting, initiative group constitutions, and so on. All these highly innovative proposals are rigorously grounded in standard economic analysis. I highly recommend this book to anyone concerned about the state of our democracies and looking for constructive reforms. Patrick Bolton, Columbia University, USA In a time of reeling democracies, it is urgent to explore how to improve on the electoral system for the benefit of society. Hans Gersbach has developed a most innovative and thought-provoking research agenda at the intersection of political theory, social choice and mechanism design. He uncovers the potentially positive effects of political contracts between candidates and society, of new rules for agenda setting and of mechanisms compensating the minorities. Marc Fleurbaey, Princeton University, USA
|Author||: Bonnie Honig|
|Editor||: Fordham Univ Press|
In the contemporary world of neoliberalism, efficiency is treated as the vehicle of political and economic health .State bureaucracy, but not corporate bureaucracy, is seen as inefficient, and privatization is seen as a magic cure for social ills. In Public Things: Democracy in Disrepair, Bonnie Honig asks whether democracy is possible in the absence of public services, spaces, and utilities. In other words, if neoliberalism leaves to democracy merely electoral majoritarianism and procedures of deliberation while divesting democratic states of their ownership of public things, what will the impact be? Following Tocqueville, who extolled the virtues of “pursuing in common the objects of common desires,” Honig focuses not on the demos but on the objects of democratic life. Democracy, as she points out, postulates public things—infrastructure, monuments, libraries—that citizens use, care for, repair, and are gathered up by. To be “gathered up” refers to the work of D. W. Winnicott, the object relations psychoanalyst who popularized the idea of “transitional objects”—the toys, teddy bears, or favorite blankets by way of which infants come to understand themselves as unified selves with an inside and an outside in relation to others. The wager of Public Things is that the work transitional objects do for infants is analogously performed for democratic citizens by public things, which press us into object relations with others and with ourselves. Public Things attends also to the historically racial character of public things: public lands taken from indigenous peoples, access to public goods restricted to white majorities. Drawing on Hannah Arendt, who saw how things fabricated by humans lend stability to the human world, Honig shows how Arendt and Winnicott—both theorists of livenesss—underline the material and psychological conditions necessary for object permanence and the reparative work needed for a more egalitarian democracy.
|Author||: Peter Krasztev,Jon Van Til|
|Editor||: Central European University Press|
This book presents compelling essays by leading Hungarian and foreign authors on the variety of social movements and parties that seek influence and power in a Hungary mired in deep and manifold crisis. The main question the volume tries to answer is: what can we expect after the fall of the semi-authoritarian Orb n regime in Hungary.ÿ Who will be the new players?ÿ What are their backgrounds? What are their political and social ideals, intentions and methods? The studies in the first section of the volume provide the reader with the reasons of the emergence of these new movements: a deep analysis of the historical, political and cultural background of the current situation. The second part contains essays and case studies which challenge the movements and parties involved to look beyond their current ineffectiveness, and to find ways of meeting the challenges that would allow them to exercise responsible and effective leadership in their time and place. This collection would be the first of the kind both in the field of movement theory/history and democracy studies because it reflects on very recent developments not researched in the international scholarly literature. One would not be able to understand contemporary Hungarian society without reading it before the 2014 elections.
|Author||: Laurel E. Miller,Jeffrey Martini,F. Stephen Larrabee,Angel Rabasa,Stephanie Pezard|
|Editor||: Rand Corporation|
Daunting challenges lie ahead for Arab countries where revolutions have upended longstanding authoritarian regimes. This monograph aims to help policymakers understand the challenges ahead, form well-founded expectations, shape diplomatic approaches, and take practical steps to foster positive change.
|Author||: Nathaniel Persily,Joshua A. Tucker|
|Editor||: Cambridge University Press|
A state-of-the-art account of what we know and do not know about the effects of digital technology on democracy.