Populism And Representative Democracy Case Study

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Theory: Populism and Representative Democracy
In this section of the article the theoretical debate on the relationship between populism and representative democracy is introduced. The definition and the status of the representative democracy is not discussed in detail. It is claimed though that representative democracy as we know it in practice is party democracy. The rise of mass political parties not only has expanded the electorate but, importantly, also introduced a new kind of links between voters and representatives (Manin, 1997). Party democracy in its classic shape, as described by Bernard Manin (1997), is a form of representative democracy with its particular features. To begin with, the society is seen as divided into different groups according to socio-economic features. These groups
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It is taken into consideration that populism not only acquires different shapes in different contexts, but the concept itself can be defined very differently – as a style (Canovan, 1999; Moffitt & Tormey, 2014), as a strategy (Weyland, 2001; Jansen, 2011), or as a thin-centered ideology (Canovan, 2002; Mudde, 2004). In this article populism is defined according to the widely used definition by Cas Mudde (2004): a set of ideas “that considers society to be ultimately separated into two homogeneous and antagonistic groups, ‘the pure people’ versus ‘the corrupt elite’, and which argues that politics should be an expression of the volonté générale (general will) of the people”. Therefore, as far as populism in party democracy is concerned, the most obvious tension is between the general will of the people (as claimed by the populist actors) and the different interests of society groups' (as in party democracy). Accordingly, homogeneous elite, as seen by populists, is in contradiction with having different political parties, which represent separate group interests in the party

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