Democracy as the Political Empowerment of the People
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Democracy as the Political Empowerment of the People : The Betrayal of an Ideal

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This book, along with its companion volume, Democracy as the Political Empowerment of the Citizen, relates the democratic potential of the latest electronic technologies to the idea of direct-participatory democracy. Taking a critical look at the past and present theories of democracy, this volume clarifies the original meaning of the idea of democracy and explains the distortions it has suffered throughout its long history.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 226 pages
  • 149.9 x 226.1 x 22.9mm | 362.88g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739118102
  • 9780739118108

Review quote

A richly comprehensive and commanding treatment of the many theories of democracy, of much value to students and scholars alike. -- Michael Parenti, author of The Face of Imperialism and God and His Demons This is a sound and instructive review of the history of democratic thought. It is also extremely well-researched and informed by a broad familiarity with contemporary theory. The author is particularly adept at seeking the authentic democratic kernels and missteps in each vision, as well as the dialogue among the various traditions and their exponents... In this sense the work is refreshingly broad and synthetic, an achievement that is valuable in the contemporary context of parochialism in political thought. -- Richard Wellen, professor of social sciences, York University (Canada) Majid Behrouzi's exhaustive and illuminating account of democracy as the 'rule by the people' takes on increased importance with new demands, in the U.S. and around the world, for citizens' substantive participation in the democratic process. Behrouzi puts pressure on democracy to live up to its full ideal and exposes those conceptions of democracy that betray its promise. In his second volume, he finds the solution in e-democracy-a stunning account backed by a genuinely illuminating and full theory. -- Joseph P. DeMarco, professor of philosophy, Cleveland State University An impressive work... Tracing the development of democracy from the Greeks to Marx, Behrouzi argues that democracy ends up being treated as an ideal that cannot be recovered. The most unique aspect of the author's intellectual history is his account of 'the perversion of the original idea of democracy.' The author seeks to recover the 'original idea of democracy' developed in ancient Athens... Clearly written and accessible to undergraduates. Highly Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates and above. CHOICE Behrouzi's Democracy as the Political Empowerment of the People: The Betrayal of an Ideal sets out an original and powerful attack on liberal democracy as a perversion of the democratic ideal. By laying claim to the idea that genuine democracy constitutes the direct participation of citizens in the legislative and political decision-making process, Behrouzi persuasively shows that the preoccupation with political representation in both democratic theory and practice is misplaced. This attack by Behrouzi lays the groundwork for his own distinctive account of democracy in the companion volume Democracy as the Political empowerment of the Citizen: Direct-Deliberative e-Democracy. -- Lesley Jacobs, professor of law and society and director of the Graduate Program in Social and Political Thought, York Universityshow more

About Majid Behrouzi

Majid Behrouzi holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from York University, Canada. In addition to philosophy, he has also studied mathematics and engineering and holds advanced degrees in these fields. He currently teaches mathematics and philosophy in Cleveland.show more

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction Part 2 Part I: The Idea of Democracy in Pre-Liberal and Non-Liberal Societies Chapter 3 The "Original" Idea of Democracy Chapter 4 Macpherson and the Idea of Democracy as a "Class Affair" Chapter 5 Rousseau and the Idea of the Sovereignty of the "General Will" Chapter 6 The "Marxian Idea of Democracy": The Ideal and the Real Chapter 7 Bolshevism and the Idea of "Proletarian Democracy" Chapter 8 Concluding Remarks to Part I Part 9 Part II: The Case of the Liberal State and Liberal Democracy Chapter 10 Liberalism and the Rise of the Liberal State Chapter 11 The Liberal State and the Idea of Representative Government Chapter 12 The Rise of the Liberal-Democratic State Chapter 13 Schumpeter and the Liberal-Democratic Conception of Democracy Chapter 14 Justifying Representative Government Chapter 15 Concluding Remarks to Part II Part 16 Part III: The Case of the Late Liberal-Democracy Chapter 17 The Late Liberal-Democratic State: Crisis of Representative Democracy Chapter 18 Theories of Participatory Democracy Chapter 19 Theories of Deliberative Democracy Chapter 20 Concluding Remarks to Part III Chapter 21 Conclusionshow more