Governing Italy: The Politics of Bargained Pluralism

Overview

The Italian political system is widely agreed to be in urgent need of reform. Power is highly dispersed and effective political leadership is almost impossible to exercise. The need for reform increases as Italy becomes more integrated into the European Community and is exposed as one of the states least able to meet EC requirements on the removal of public subsidies to industry, the implementation of internal-market measures, and, most importantly, the budgetary and inflation targets for monetary union. This ...
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Overview

The Italian political system is widely agreed to be in urgent need of reform. Power is highly dispersed and effective political leadership is almost impossible to exercise. The need for reform increases as Italy becomes more integrated into the European Community and is exposed as one of the states least able to meet EC requirements on the removal of public subsidies to industry, the implementation of internal-market measures, and, most importantly, the budgetary and inflation targets for monetary union. This book outlines the complex, bargained pluralism of contemporary political life, showing how the dispersal of power across a wide range of political actors makes co-ordinated decision-making and policy implementation extremely difficult. It traces the origins of this system to the polarized party structure that emerged from Fascism, the Resistance, and the Cold War, and to the 1948 Constitution, where the foundations of a proportionalist, power-sharing mentality, underpinned by liberal constitutional guarantees, were laid. Today this system has become institutionalized, yet it is increasingly irrelevant to the needs of a modern society and economy. David Hine explores the hitherto largely unsuccessful efforts at reform, emphasizing how the deep differences that exist over the nature and purpose of reform itself and the lack of a clear lead from the parties are making this task extremely difficult.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A clear, well-organized and penetrating description and analysis of the Italian political system prior to 1993."—Stanley Payne, University of Wisconsin

"Excellent....An original account of the workings of the Italian political system....His analysis of governmental institutions is extremely well documented and quite original."—Political Science Quarterly

"An exceptionally detailed account of Italy's principal parties and government institutions."—Choice

"Well-informed and interesting....Hine's style is both lucid and terse throughout....Such an attempt at Italian politics is brave at this time of turbulence, and Hine has done a good job at explaining a system that is often confusing to non-specialists."—Times Higher Education Supplement

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198761723
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 4/29/1993
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 5.75 (w) x 8.88 (h) x 1.13 (d)

Table of Contents

Abbreviations
Introduction: The Debate on the Italian Political System 1
1 The Weight of the Past 11
2 The Economic and Social Foundations of Contemporary Politics 33
3 The Party System 68
4 Party Organization 108
5 The Constitutional Order: An Introduction 145
6 Parliamentary Government 166
7 The Political Executive 197
8 The Administrative System 225
9 Regional and Local Government 257
10 The European Community Dimension of Italian Government 282
Conclusion 300
Notes 312
Appendix I. Italian Prime Ministers and Governments since June 1945 345
Appendix II. Presidents of the Republic since 1946 346
Appendix III. Political Secretaries of the Christian Democrat Party since 1945 347
Appendix IV. Political Secretaries of the Italian Communist Party, 1945-1991 347
Appendix V. The Italian Constitution: Articles 55-139 348
Bibliography 367
Index 381
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