The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Someone has to do it: towards a practical defence of politicians

Someone has to do it: towards a practical defence of politicians
Someone has to do it: towards a practical defence of politicians
In response to rising popular disenchantment with elected officials, numerous scholars have sought to defend politics and restate why it matters. For the most part, however, these theoretical arguments overlook the views and reflections of politicians themselves. As a step towards filling this gap, the author surveys politician-centred studies from around the world and the reflections of academics who have become politicians. By paying careful attention to what ‘insiders’ say about life in politics, the author constructs a practical rather than theoretical defence of the vocation and the people who undertake it. The author argues that politicians' views remind one that human endeavour is central to the purpose and function of politics and associated political institutions. To link the practical views and experiences of politicians with the emerging literature on demonisation, the author revisits the work of Arendt and Weber. The author concludes that while one may not always like who politicians are or the ways they operate, revaluing endeavour allows one to give credit where credit is due; politicians may regularly disappoint people but representative democracy does not work without them.
1356-9775
468-484
Corbett, Jack
ad651655-ac70-4072-a36f-92165e296ce2
Corbett, Jack
ad651655-ac70-4072-a36f-92165e296ce2

Corbett, Jack (2015) Someone has to do it: towards a practical defence of politicians. Contemporary Politics, 21 (4), 468-484. (doi:10.1080/13569775.2015.1013290).

Record type: Article

Abstract

In response to rising popular disenchantment with elected officials, numerous scholars have sought to defend politics and restate why it matters. For the most part, however, these theoretical arguments overlook the views and reflections of politicians themselves. As a step towards filling this gap, the author surveys politician-centred studies from around the world and the reflections of academics who have become politicians. By paying careful attention to what ‘insiders’ say about life in politics, the author constructs a practical rather than theoretical defence of the vocation and the people who undertake it. The author argues that politicians' views remind one that human endeavour is central to the purpose and function of politics and associated political institutions. To link the practical views and experiences of politicians with the emerging literature on demonisation, the author revisits the work of Arendt and Weber. The author concludes that while one may not always like who politicians are or the ways they operate, revaluing endeavour allows one to give credit where credit is due; politicians may regularly disappoint people but representative democracy does not work without them.

This record has no associated files available for download.

More information

e-pub ahead of print date: 25 February 2015
Organisations: Politics & International Relations

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 388376
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/388376
ISSN: 1356-9775
PURE UUID: 15e36a10-f27d-4f26-8249-1152da4bbe99
ORCID for Jack Corbett: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-2005-7162

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 24 Feb 2016 12:49
Last modified: 09 Jan 2022 03:50

Export record

Altmetrics

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×