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Paths to power and patterns of influence: The Dravidian parties in south Indian politics
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
2000 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This doctoral thesis has resulted from a study of the three, regional, Dravidian, parties in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu-a region that has a reputation for its 'personality politics'. The purpose is to analyse the relationship between modes of mobilisatioand the structures of authority in these political parties, that undeniably, although in different degrees and on different ground bestow on their leaders eminence beyond the formal position of rank.

Theoretically, the study is related to the discussions on political populism and clientelism. The parties have been analysed along three dimensions-their political message, agents of mobilisation and constraints on leader authority-and have been found tvary systematically in all three respects. Ruling-party affiliation is an important source of informal influence over government administration for any party. However, the main parties, the DMK and the AIADMK, differ with regard to the strength and autonomy of their local organisations. This in turn reflects differences in the bases of support and legitimacy of the party leaders. The importance accessibility, recognition and rewards was manifested in the 1996 Assembly elections, in which the AIADMK performed poorly, partlbecause it failed to satisfy the expectations of rewards of their lower-level cadres and activists while in office.

The investigation ends in the argument that the relationship between a populist leader and his or her followers can be reminiscent of a traditional, patron-client bond. This is the reason why internal-party clientelism in all likelihood is more important f political mobilisation than exchange relations with the broader public. Energetic electioneering at the grass-roots level matters for a party's share of the votes, also in those parties headed by leaders with stronpersonal appeal. However, the members expect recognition for the efforts they put into party work. Populism and clientelism can therefore be mutually reinforcing phenomena. Finally, norms subservience are discussed from a democratic point of view.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 2000. , 404 p.
Skrifter utgivna av Statsvetenskapliga föreningen i Uppsala, ISSN 0346-7538 ; 140
Keyword [en]
Political science, India, political parties, party organisation, mobilisation, leaders, populism, clientelism, authority structures, broking, leader cult
Keyword [sv]
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
Research subject
Political Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-483ISBN: 91-554-4764-3OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-483DiVA: diva2:165911
Public defence
2000-10-07, Brusewitzsalen, Gamla Torget 6., Uppsala, 13:15 (English)
Available from: 2000-09-16 Created: 2000-09-16 Last updated: 2010-01-13Bibliographically approved

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