Representative government in the West was born under an ideology that postulated a basic harmony of interests in society. The political decision process was thus expected to be largely consensual. This ideology obfuscated important conflicts of values and interests, and it became untenable with the rise of mass, class-based and religious parties. Beginning with Kelsen (1923) and culminating with Schumpeter (1942), theorists of representative government conceptualized it as a system for processing conflicts. In one view, representation is assured by compromises among parties, in another by partisan alternation in office.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Sciences(all)