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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

Malaysia's Transitional Moment? : Democratic Transition Theory And The Problem Of Malaysian Exceptionalism., Jason P. Abbott Aug 2016

Malaysia's Transitional Moment? : Democratic Transition Theory And The Problem Of Malaysian Exceptionalism., Jason P. Abbott

Jason Abbott

Many theorists of democratization transition have, either explicitly or implicitly, a teleological concept of political progress, liberalization and reform. For such theorists, countries such as Malaysia are therefore in transition towards substantive 'full' liberal democracy. Taken in this light, the significant advances by opposition political parties in the 2008 federal and state elections in Malaysia represent a major advance towards this end goal. While many have highlighted that Malaysia may in fact be an exception to this rule, this paper contends instead that the Malaysian case study challenges the central tenets of democratic transition more profoundly. Indeed, since independence the ...


Hungary's Illiberal Turn: Can Outsiders Help?, Cas Mudde, Erin K. Jenne Jun 2012

Hungary's Illiberal Turn: Can Outsiders Help?, Cas Mudde, Erin K. Jenne

Cas Mudde

Since the conservative FIDESZ won the 2010 Hungarian elections, the new government under Premier Victor Orban has begun an unprecedented reform of the country's political system, strongly undermining the fundamentals of liberal democracy. With the opposition parties discredited, the only hope is in a slowly developing civil society. This article looks at what the international community (in particular the EU) can do to pressure the Hungarian government to respect liberal democracy and to strengthen the democratic opposition.


On The Evasion Of Executive Term Limits, Tom Ginsburg Jan 2011

On The Evasion Of Executive Term Limits, Tom Ginsburg

Tom Ginsburg

Executive term limits are pre-commitments through which the polity restricts its ability to retain a popular executive down the road. But in recent years, many presidents around the world have chosen to remain in office even after their initial maximum term in office has expired. They have largely done so by amending the constitution, or sometimes by replacing it entirely. The practice of revising higher law for the sake of a particular incumbent raises intriguing issues that touch ultimately on the normative justification for term limits in the first place. This article reviews the normative debate over term limits and ...


From Undemocratic To Democratic Civil Society: Japan's Volunteer Fire Departments, Mary Alice Haddad Jan 2010

From Undemocratic To Democratic Civil Society: Japan's Volunteer Fire Departments, Mary Alice Haddad

Mary Alice Haddad

How do undemocratic civic organizations become compatible with democratic civil society? How do local organizations merge older patriarchal, hierarchical values and practices with newer more egalitarian, democratic ones? This article tells the story of how volunteer fire departments have done this in Japan. Their transformation from centralized war instrument of an authoritarian regime to local community safety organization of a full-fledged democracy did not happen overnight. A slow process of demographic and value changes helped the organization adjust to more democratic social values and practices. The way in which this organization made the transition offers important lessons for emerging democracies ...


Upping The Odds: Deviant Democracies And Theories Of Democratization, Renske Doorenspleet, Cas Mudde Dec 2007

Upping The Odds: Deviant Democracies And Theories Of Democratization, Renske Doorenspleet, Cas Mudde

Cas Mudde

This concluding article tries to integrate the different insights of the individual case studies of this special issue into some comparative observations. The findings are related to debates and findings of the broader literature on democratization, with the aim of generating new insights that might help develop new studies on the topic. Importantly, our suggestions are to be considered as hypotheses complementary to the two dominant theories of democratization, rather than opposite to them, accepting both their key assumptions and stipulations. More specifically, two aspects of key concern to the study of democratization are discussed in more detail: the phasing ...


Democracy On Stilts: Bolivia's Democracy From Stability To Crisis, Miguel Centellas Apr 2007

Democracy On Stilts: Bolivia's Democracy From Stability To Crisis, Miguel Centellas

Miguel Centellas

Bolivia’s recent political crisis starkly contrasts to the preceding two decades of relative democratic stability. Though a unique system of “parliamentarized” presidentialism together with lingering consensus on the national project inherited from the 1952 Revolution supported democratic stability, using qualitative and quantitative methods, this study shows that seemingly benign changes in institutional design made in the 1990s contributed to the acceleration of already existing tendencies towards divisive sectoral, regional, and ethnic politics. A key observation is that successful long-term democratization requires institutions for adequately channeling and representing social demands as well as a shared vision of a political “imagined ...


Distrust Breeds Bureaucracy: Democratization And The Formal Regulation Of Electoral Governance In Mexico, Andreas Schedler Jan 2001

Distrust Breeds Bureaucracy: Democratization And The Formal Regulation Of Electoral Governance In Mexico, Andreas Schedler

Andreas Schedler

In contemporary Mexico, political parties have subject electoral authorities to tight legal regulation. Their reliance on “bureaucratic” control sheds light on a crucial premise of “post-bureaucratic” approaches: deregulation presupposes trust. The article describes the distrust-driven regulation of three areas of electoral governance: record keeping, the identification of voters and ballots, and time rules. It concludes with reflections on the potential costs of bureaucratizing electoral governance.


Explaining Different Paths Of Democratization: The Czech And Slovak Republics, Cas Mudde Dec 1999

Explaining Different Paths Of Democratization: The Czech And Slovak Republics, Cas Mudde

Cas Mudde

Since the ‘velvet split’ in January 1993, the Czech and Slovak Republics seem to have developed into completely different directions: towards a role model and a problematic case of post-communist democracy respectively. This supposedly sharp difference in development provides in itself a very interesting topic for study, but also makes for a very useful set-up to evaluate the many theories that have been offered to explain (un)successful processes of democratization in Eastern Europe. In this article, we compare the two countries in light of their degree of ‘democratic consolidation’, to establish in more detail in which way they actually ...


A Burguesia Contra O Estado? Crise Política, Ação De Classe E Os Rumos Da Transição, Adriano Codato Jan 1995

A Burguesia Contra O Estado? Crise Política, Ação De Classe E Os Rumos Da Transição, Adriano Codato

Adriano Codato

This article discusses the bourgeoisie struggles against "nationalization" (1975-1976), and for "democracy" (1977-1978) and their relation to the transformations of the state system in Brazil after 1974. My objective here is to determine in what way certain organizational formats promoted by the Geisel government (1974-1979) significantly altered the current system of representation of "private" interests, based on corporatism, and its relation to the political conflicts from the "distension" period and the "political opening".