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Democracy and Apartheid: Political Theory, Comparative Politics and the Modern South Afric
     

Democracy and Apartheid: Political Theory, Comparative Politics and the Modern South Afric

by Anthony Butler, Butler
 

Using South Africa's transition a focus, this book assesses and challenges conventional assumptions in the theory of democracy. Political philosophers treat the electoral method as a means of resolving conflict into consensus within a pre-existing political community. The author shows how the South African case demonstrates the viability of the electoral method in

Overview

Using South Africa's transition a focus, this book assesses and challenges conventional assumptions in the theory of democracy. Political philosophers treat the electoral method as a means of resolving conflict into consensus within a pre-existing political community. The author shows how the South African case demonstrates the viability of the electoral method in the absence of a community with common languages of political appraisal. Elections can transform one kind of conflict into another, and the idea of democracy itself can facilitate communication between sociologically separated groups with diverse political languages. This book turns these lessons back on Western democracies and asks whether they are not also characterized by systemic determination and sociological division.

Editorial Reviews

Booknews
An assessment that looks beyond initial celebrations to some of the negative aspects of the new government. Butler (politics, U. of Nottingham) attacks the myth that democracy ended apartheid and shows that democratic practices themselves contributed to its evils. He explores weaknesses in political science as a discipline and ends with an investigation of the human significance of the modern election. Intended for South Africa specialists as well as political theorists and students of comparative politics and history. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312216962
Publisher:
Palgrave Macmillan
Publication date:
11/28/1998
Edition description:
REV
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
5.74(w) x 8.83(h) x 1.11(d)

Meet the Author

Anthony Butler is Lecturer in Politics at the University of Nottingham.

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