A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country by Steven L. Taylor

By Steven L. Taylor

4 distinctive students in political technological know-how learn American democracy from a comparative perspective, exploring how the U.S. political approach differs from that of thirty different democracies and what these alterations eventually suggest for democratic functionality. This crucial textual content ways the subsequent associations from a political engineering perspective: constitutions, electoral structures, and political events, in addition to legislative, government, and judicial strength. The textual content appears to be like at democracies from worldwide over a two-decade timeframe. the result's not just a clean view of the much-discussed subject matter of yank exceptionalism but additionally an leading edge method of comparative politics that treats the U.S. as yet one case between many. an excellent textbook for either American and comparative politics courses.

Steven L. Taylor is professor and chair of political technological know-how, Troy college. Matthew S. Shugart is professor of political technological know-how, college of California, Davis. Arend Lijphart is study professor emeritus of political technological know-how, college of California, San Diego. Bernard Grofman is professor of political technology, college of California, Irvine.

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Such treaties, in which subjects (or vassals) pledged to obey all-powerful rulers, were common in the ancient Near East. The distinctive feature of the Jewish scriptures had to do with God’s commitment to treat with infinite born in bloodshed | 27 mercy the people who had bound themselves to his law. 14 The logic of the covenant thus pointed in the direction of establishing the unlimited authority of the law and implied the limited authority of any particular king. Along with the Ten Commandments given to Moses, the covenant, as articulated in Exodus and Leviticus, elevated the principle of the golden rule.

Citizens should be paid to serve on juries so all can participate in public life. Legislation should be decided by a sovereign assembly in which all citizens can speak. 31 Aristotle’s ideal mixed polity would adopt as many of those features as proved consistent with stability and exclude slaves, women, and foreigners, all of whom Aristotle deemed “irrational” because they lacked the deliberative faculty crucial for collective decision making. The capacity to see beyond narrow self-interest was the defining characteristic of the citizens of Aristotle’s mixed polity.

This is because it commands our deep respect. ” Finally, although all citizens were thought equal before born in bloodshed | 31 the law, Athenians understood that such equality was empty if it remained merely formal. 22 Periclean Athens was radically democratic compared with earlier and contemporary forms of government in the Greek city-states. Although Pericles thought that made “the school of Hellas” a model, some of the most influential philosophers of ancient Greece considered the democratic constitution of Athens its fatal flaw.

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