Borrowing Constitutional Designs

Author: Cindy Skach
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400832620
Format: PDF, Mobi
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After the collapse of communism, some thirty countries scrambled to craft democratic constitutions. Surprisingly, the constitutional model they most often chose was neither the pure parliamentary model found in most of Western Europe at the time, nor the presidential model of the Americas. Rather, it was semi-presidentialism--a rare model known more generally as the "French type." This constitutional model melded elements of pure presidentialism with those of pure parliamentarism. Specifically, semi-presidentialism combined a popularly elected head of state with a head of government responsible to a legislature. Borrowing Constitutional Designs questions the hasty adoption of semi-presidentialism by new democracies. Drawing on rich case studies of two of the most important countries for European politics in the twentieth century--Weimar Germany and the French Fifth Republic--Cindy Skach offers the first theoretically focused, and historically grounded, analysis of semi-presidentialism and democracy. She demonstrates that constitutional choice matters, because under certain conditions, semi-presidentialism structures incentives that make democratic consolidation difficult or that actually contribute to democratic collapse. She offers a new theory of constitutional design, integrating insights from law and the social sciences. In doing so, Skach challenges both democratic theory and democratic practice. This book will be welcomed not only by scholars and practitioners of constitutional law but also by those in fields such as comparative politics, European politics and history, and international and public affairs.

Semi Presidentialism and Democracy

Author: R. Elgie
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 023030642X
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Explores the effect of semi-presidentialism on newly-democratising countries. In recent years semi-presidentialism - the situation where a constitution makes provision for both a directly elected president and a prime minister who is responsible to the legislature - has become the regime type of choice for many countries.

Post Imperial Democracies

Author: Stephen E. Hanson
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139491490
Format: PDF, ePub
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This book examines the causal impact of ideology through a comparative-historical analysis of three cases of 'post-imperial democracy': the early Third Republic in France (1870–86); the Weimar Republic in Germany (1918–34); and post-Soviet Russia (1992–2008). Hanson argues that political ideologies are typically necessary for the mobilization of enduring, independent national party organizations in uncertain democracies. By presenting an explicit and desirable picture of the political future, successful ideologues induce individuals to embrace a long-run strategy of cooperation with other converts. When enough new converts cooperate in this way, it enables sustained collective action to defend and extend party power. Successful party ideologies thus have the character of self-fulfilling prophecies: by portraying the future polity as one organized to serve the interests of those loyal to specific ideological principles, they help to bring political organizations centered on these principles into being.

Understanding Ukrainian Politics Power Politics and Institutional Design

Author: Paul D'Anieri
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317452992
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Ukraine made headlines around the world during the winter of 2004-05 as the colorful banners of the Orange Revolution unfurled against the snowy backdrop of Kyiv, signaling the bright promise of democratic rebirth. But is that what is really happening in Ukraine? In the early post-Soviet period, Ukraine appeared to be firmly on the path to democracy. The peaceful transfer of power from Leonid Kravchuk to Leonid Kuchma in the election of 1994, followed by the adoption of a western-style democratic constitution in 1996, seemed to complete the picture. But the Kuchma presidency was soon clouded by dark rumors of corruption and even political murder, and by 2004 the country was in full-blown political crisis. A three-stage presidential contest was ultimately won by Viktor Yushchenko, who took office in 2005 and appointed Yulia Tymoshenko as premier, but the turmoil was far from over. The new government quickly faltered and splintered. This introduction to Ukrainian politics looks beyond these dramatic events and compelling personalities to identify the actual play of power in Ukraine and the operation of its political system. The author seeks to explain how it is that, after each new beginning, power politics has trumped democratic institution-building in Ukraine, as in so many other post-Soviet states. What is really at work here, and how can Ukraine break the cycle of hope and disillusionment?

Structuring the State

Author: Daniel Ziblatt
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400827248
Format: PDF, ePub
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Germany's and Italy's belated national unifications continue to loom large in contemporary debates. Often regarded as Europe's paradigmatic instances of failed modernization, the two countries form the basis of many of our most prized theories of social science. Structuring the State undertakes one of the first systematic comparisons of the two cases, putting the origins of these nation-states and the nature of European political development in new light. Daniel Ziblatt begins his analysis with a striking puzzle: Upon national unification, why was Germany formed as a federal nation-state and Italy as a unitary nation-state? He traces the diplomatic maneuverings and high political drama of national unification in nineteenth-century Germany and Italy to refute the widely accepted notion that the two states' structure stemmed exclusively from Machiavellian farsightedness on the part of militarily powerful political leaders. Instead, he demonstrates that Germany's and Italy's "founding fathers" were constrained by two very different pre-unification patterns of institutional development. In Germany, a legacy of well-developed sub-national institutions provided the key building blocks of federalism. In Italy, these institutions' absence doomed federalism. This crucial difference in the organization of local power still shapes debates about federalism in Italy and Germany today. By exposing the source of this enduring contrast, Structuring the State offers a broader theory of federalism's origins that will interest scholars and students of comparative politics, state-building, international relations, and European political history.

The Oxford Handbook of Political Leadership

Author: R. A. W. Rhodes
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191645869
Format: PDF, Docs
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Political leadership has made a comeback. It was studied intensively not only by political scientists but also by political sociologists and psychologists, Sovietologists, political anthropologists, and by scholars in comparative and development studies from the 1940s to the 1970s. Thereafter, the field lost its way with the rise of structuralism, neo-institutionalism, and rational choice approaches to the study of politics, government, and governance. Recently, however, students of politics have returned to studying the role of individual leaders and the exercise of leadership to explain political outcomes. The list of topics is nigh endless: elections, conflict management, public policy, government popularity, development, governance networks, and regional integration. In the media age, leaders are presented and stage-managed—spun—as the solution to almost every social problem. Through the mass media and the Internet, citizens and professional observers follow the rise, impact, and fall of senior political officeholders at closer quarters than ever before. This Handbook encapsulates the resurgence by asking, where are we today? It orders the multidisciplinary field by identifying the distinct and distinctive contributions of the disciplines. It meets the urgent need to take stock. It brings together scholars from around the world, encouraging a comparative perspective, to provide a comprehensive coverage of all the major disciplines, methods, and regions. It showcases both the normative and empirical traditions in political leadership studies, and juxtaposes behavioural, institutional, and interpretive approaches. It covers formal, office-based as well as informal, emergent political leadership, and in both democratic and undemocratic polities.

Judges in Contemporary Democracy

Author: Justice Stephen Breyer
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 0814789714
Format: PDF, Docs
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Law, politics, and society in the modern West have been marked by the increasing power of the judge: the development of constitutional justice, the evolution of international judiciaries, and judicial systems that extend even further into social life. Judges make decisions that not only enforce the law, but also codify the values of our times. In the summer of 2000, an esteemed group of judges and legal scholars met in Provence, France, to consider the role of the judge in modern society. They included Robert Badinter, former president of the Constitutional Council in France; Stephen Breyer, Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States; Antonio Cassese, the first president of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia; Dieter Grimm, former vice president of the Constitutional Court of Germany; Gil Carlos Rodriguez, president of the Court of Justice of the European Union; and Ronald Dworkin, formerly of Oxford University, now professor of philosophy and law at the New York University Law School. What followed was an animated discussion ranging from the influence of the media on the judiciary to the development of an international criminal law to the judge's consideration of the judge's own role. Judges in Contemporary Democracy offers a rare and intimate glimpse into the powers and the role of judges in today's society.

Camus at Combat

Author: Albert Camus
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691133768
Format: PDF
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For the first time in English, "Camus at Combat" presents all of Camus' World War II resistance and early postwar writings published in "Combat," the resistance newspaper where he served as editor-in-chief and editorial writer between 1944 and 1947.