Why politics matters: making democracy work

Stoker, Gerry (2006) Why politics matters: making democracy work, Basingstoke, GB, Palgrave Macmillan, 248pp.


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Achieving mass democracy was the great triumph of the twentieth century. Learning to live with it will be the greatest achievement of the twenty-first century.
A rising tide of discontent is posing a major crisis for systems of mass democracy: the evidence is clear to see in reduced turnout and party membership and in opinion surveys. The failures of politicians have played their part but, Gerry Stoker argues, equally important are the dysfunctional political stances and styles adopted by many citizens. Democratic politics, he argues, is doomed to disappoint because it involves collective decision-making, demands complicated communication and generally produces a messy compromise. One size fits no-one.

So what is the solution? Stoker suggests that democracy - and the political class - must create a new politics, making it as easy as possible for as many people as possible to express and debate their political preferences.

Item Type: Book
ISBNs: 9781403997395 (hardback)
Related URLs:
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
J Political Science > JC Political theory
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Social Sciences > Politics and International Relations
ePrint ID: 47278
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
July 2006Published
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2007
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:23
The Principles of Governance: Corporate & Political
Funded by: ESRC National Centre for Research Methods (RES-051-27-0067-A)
Led by: Gerry Stoker
1 February 2007 to 30 June 2008
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/47278

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