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Contemporary Democratic Theory

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2023-12-26
  • Publisher: Polity

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Supplemental Materials

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Is democracy worth saving? Responding to the erosion of democracy, philosophical debates have pivoted from analyzing the best forms of democracy to questioning what is so valuable about democracy to begin with, how we can save it, and whether it is indeed worth saving. 

Contemporary Democratic Theory charts this pivot and surveys the most important new developments in the philosophical, theoretical, and normative examination of the concept of democracy. Comparisons that dominated 20th century democratic theory - between direct democracy, participatory democracy, deliberative democracy, and agonistic democracy - are in the 21st century giving way to comparisons between democracy and its challengers: epistocracy, technocracy, meritocracy, oligarchy, and autocracy. Philosophical interest in the canonical figures of democratic theory like Aristotle, Rousseau and Mill is being eclipsed by damage control in the face populism, sinking trust in democratic institutions, failing political parties, and the spread of misinformation.

Overarching epochal forces of crisis and threat are pushing democratic theory in new directions and towards new ideas. This refreshing and authoritative text identifies, explains, and evaluates the new directions taken by contemporary democratic theory in challenging times.

Author Biography

Simone Chambers is a Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Irvine.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: Justifying Democracy

Chapter 3: Equality

Chapter 4: Freedom

Chapter 5: Instrumentalism 1: Realism

Chapter 6: Instrumentalism 2: Performance Skeptics

Chapter 7: Instrumentalism 3: Epistemic Democracy

Chapter 8: Populism and the People

Chapter 9: Representation

Chapter 10: Public Sphere

Chapter 11: Innovation and Disobedience

Chapter 12: Conclusion

Supplemental Materials

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The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

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