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ERIC Number: EJ1049693
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Reference Count: 28
Participatory Democracy: Beyond Classical Liberalism
Doughty, Howard A.
College Quarterly, v17 n3 Sum 2014
Postsecondary teacher, Howard Doughty, has been teaching politics and government for close to fifty years. That time has been spent not only working with the empirical analysis of political behaviour and the normative analysis of political theory, but also in the practical activity of promoting understanding of what is frequently called civic life. In line with current standards and educational goals for faculty members involved in "general education," Doughty asserts a good part of that mission should involve the both cognitive knowledge (how governments work, issues of policy development, elements of the political process, etc.) and what are sometimes called "affective" and "behavioural" traits--habits of attitude and action that encourage good citizenship. More specifically, these educators are expected to teach something about democracy. Herein, Doughty discusses the historical controversy that follows the concept of democracy in theory and in practice. Next, he highlights four primary concerns about the current state of democracy and electoral system. Doughty goes on to explore briefly one set of criticisms of contemporary democratic politics as they are practiced in the United States of America, Canada and the United Kingdom. A description of the First-Past-the-Post (FPP) electoral system and its overall flaws are then discussed. Three cases are then presented to illustrate why some people regard FPP as an unfair and even an undemocratic way to elect presidents, prime ministers and legislators of various descriptions. Doughty concludes with several arguments demonstrating why FPP should be replaced with the Proportional Representation (PR) electoral system.
Descriptors: Democracy, Political Attitudes, Citizen Participation, Citizen Role, Citizenship Responsibility, Elections, Voting, Neoliberalism, Knowledge Level, Authoritarianism, Foreign Countries
Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology. 1750 Finch Avenue East, Toronto, Ontario M2J 2X5, Canada. Tel: 416-491-5050; Fax: 905-479-4561; Web site: http://www.collegequarterly.ca
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada; United Kingdom (England); United States