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Capitalist development and democracy

Author: Dietrich Rueschemeyer; Evelyne Huber; John D Stephens
Publisher: Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1992.
Edition/Format:   Book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
It is a commonplace claim of Western political discourse that capitalist development and democracy go hand in hand. Cross-national statistical research on political democracy supports this claim. By contrast, comparative historical studies carried out within a political economy approach argue that economic development was and is compatible with multiple political forms.
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Genre/Form: Case studies
Cas, Études de
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Rueschemeyer, Dietrich.
Capitalist development and democracy.
Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1992
(OCoLC)555322184
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Dietrich Rueschemeyer; Evelyne Huber; John D Stephens
ISBN: 0226731421 9780226731421 0226731448 9780226731445
OCLC Number: 24320987
Description: ix, 387 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: Preface --
1. Introduction: The Problem of Capitalist Development and Democracy --
2. Capitalist Development and Democracy: The Controversy Comparative Historical and Cross-national Quantitative Research on Development and Democracy Methodological Reflections --
3. Capitalist Development and Democracy: A Theoretical Framework Democracy and its Relation to Social Inequality Class Structures, Classes, and Class Organizations State Structures and Democracy Democracy and the Transnational Structures of Power Comparative Research on Democracy in a New Framework --
4. Advanced Capitalist Countries Introduction The Transition to Democracy in Europe: The Democratic Cases Transition and Breakdown: The Authoritarian Cases Democratic Development in Britain's Settler Colonies Conclusion and Discussion --
5. Latin America The Argument Conditions for Initial Democratization Regime Transformations after Initial Democratization Regime Transformations and Transnational Structures of Power Conclusion --
6. Central America and The Caribbean Introduction Caribbean and Central American Cases Compared Variations within the English-speaking Caribbean Conclusion --
7. Conclusions and Reflections Theoretical Assessment --
Reflections --
Appendix: Classification of Regimes --
Notes --
References --
Index.
Responsibility: Dietrich Rueschemeyer, Evelyne Huber Stephens, and John D. Stephens.
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Abstract:

It is a commonplace claim of Western political discourse that capitalist development and democracy go hand in hand. Cross-national statistical research on political democracy supports this claim. By contrast, comparative historical studies carried out within a political economy approach argue that economic development was and is compatible with multiple political forms.

The authors offer a fresh and persuasive resolution to the controversy arising out of these contrasting traditions. Focusing on advanced industrial countries, Latin America, and the Caribbean, they find that the rise and persistence of democracy cannot be explained either by an overall structural correspondence between capitalism and democracy or by the role of the bourgeoisie as the agent of democratic reform. Rather, capitalist development is associated with democracy because it transforms the class structure, enlarging the working and middle classes, facilitating their self-organization, and thus making it more difficult for elites to exclude them. Simultaneously, development weakens the landed upper class, democracy's most consistent opponent.

The relationship of capitalist development to democracy, however, is not mechanical. As the authors show, it depends on a complex interplay of three clusters of power: the balance of power among social classes, power relations between the state and society, and transnational structures of economic and political power. Looking to the future, the book concludes with some reflections on current prospects for the development of stable democracy in Latin America and Eastern Europe.

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