The Condition of Democracy

The Condition of Democracy

The Condition of Democracy

Recent years have seen contestations of democracy all around the globe. Democracy is challenged as a political as well as a normative term, and as a form of governance. Against the background of neoliberal transformation, populist mobilization, and xenophobic exclusion, but also of radical and emancipatory democratic projects, this collection offers a variety of critical and challenging perspectives on the condition of democracy in the 21st century. The volumes provide theoretical and empirical enquiries into the meaning and practice of liberal democracy, the erosion of democratic institutions, and the consequences for citizenship and everyday lives. With a pronounced focus on national and transnational politics and processes, as well as postcolonial and settler colonial contexts, individual contributions scrutinize the role of democratic societies, ideals, and ideologies of liberal democracy within global power geometries. By employing the multiple meanings of The Condition of Democracy, the collection addresses the preconditions of democratic rule, the state this form of governance is in, and the changing ways in which citizens can (still) act as the sovereign in liberal democratic societies. The books offer both challenging theoretical perspectives and rigorous empirical findings of how to conceive of democracy in our times, which will appeal to academics and students in social and political science, economics, and international relations amongst other fields. The focus on developments in the Middle East and North Africa will furthermore be of great usefulness to academics and the wider public interested in the repercussions of western democracy promotion as well as in contemporary struggles for democratization ‘from below’. During the last 50 years, liberal democracies have been exposed to a fundamental reorganization of their politico-economic structure that transformed them through the impact of neo-liberal economic doctrines focused on low taxation, free markets, and out-sourcing that have little regard in reality for democratic institutions or liberal values. The failures of the neoliberal ‘remedy’ for capitalism are now dramatically obvious through the banking crisis of 2008-2011, the increase in income inequality, the social and psychological damage caused by the austerity packages across Europe, and widespread dependence on experts whose influence over government policies typically goes without public scrutiny. While this has only accelerated the destruction of the social fabric in modern Western societies, the dramatic redistribution of wealth and an open 'politics for the rich' have also revealed the long-time well-covered alliance of the global oligarchy with the Far Right that has the effect of undermining democracy. The contributions to this volume discuss a wide variety of processes of transformation, the social consequences, dedemocratization and illiberalization of once liberal democracies through the destructive impact of neoliberal strategies. These strongly politico-economic contributions are complemented with general sociological analyses of a number of cultural aspects often neglected in analyses of democracy.

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Publisher : Routledge
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ISBN : 100040191X
Pages : 198 pages
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