Return to: Search Page or to: Table of Contents Vol. 5, issue 3

Susan E. Scarrow, "Democracy within--and without--Parties: Introduction," Party Politics, 5 (July 1999), 275-282.

First Paragraph:
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:
None.

Last Paragraph:
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.