Reason, representation, and participation

Res Publica 13 (2):171-189 (2007)
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This paper argues that the contrast between direct and representative democracy is less important than that between simple majoritarianism and deliberative i.e., public reason centred, democracy, as only the latter is sufficiently sensitive to the problem of domination. Having explored a range of arguments in favour of direct democracy it is argued that moves in this direction are only warranted when the practice of public reasoning will be enhanced. Both symbolic representation and delegate democracy are rejected in favour of substantive measures to formalise communication between voters and representatives and permit the formal contestation of political decision on the ground that these will provide stronger defences against domination within the political system



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Cillian McBride
Queen's University, Belfast

References found in this work

Integrity and Disrespect.Axel Honneth - 1992 - Political Theory 20 (2):187-201.
Deliberative Democracy, the Discursive Dilemma and Republican Theory.Philip Pettit - 2003 - In James S. Fishkin & Peter Laslett (eds.), Debating Deliberative Democracy. Oxford, UK: Blackwel. pp. 138-162.

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