The concept of democracy has become tarnished in recent years, as governments become disconnected from voters and pursue unpopular policies. And yet the ideal of democracy continues to inspire movements around the world, most recently the uprisings across the Arab world. Brian Roper refreshes our understanding of democracy using a Marxist theoretical framework. He traces the history of democracy as it has passed through various historical moments from Athenian democracy to the Roman Republic, the revolutionary emergence of liberal representative and socialist participatory democracy in Europe and North America, and the global spread of democracy during the past century. Roper argues that democracy cannot be understood separately from underlying processes of exploitation, and the class and social struggles these generate. He offers an engaging Marxist critique of representative democracy, and raises the possibility of alternative socialist and participatory democratic forms, which will be of interest to students and scholars of history, politics, and those in other disciplines who are concerned about the past, present, and future of democracy.
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Published November 20, 2012
by Pluto Press.
Political & Social Sciences.