Susan E. Scarrow, "Democracy within--and
without--Parties: Introduction," Party Politics, 5
(July 1999), 275-282.
Since the time of Rousseau, direct democracy and
representative democracy have often been portrayed as
processes founded on antithetical notions of the
individual's proper role in community decision-making. In
the context of modern representative systems, this
antithesis can be posed as the difference between party
democracy and direct democracy. All but the most fervent
advocates of direct democracy have been quick to admit that
direct decision-making devices can only modify, but never
entirely replace, representative democracy in modern mass
polities. Nevertheless, the idea of a conflict between
mediated and unmediated modes of self-government still
surfaces in contemporary debates about expanding direct
citizen control in existing representative systems.
Figures and Tables:
As these summaries suggest, this issue's diverse
contributions are united by their shared aim of illuminating
the interactions of, and contradictions between,
party-mediated democracy and direct democracy.