Representative Democracy as Tautology: Ankersmit and Lefort on Representation
2006 (English)In: European Journal of Political Theory, ISSN 1474-8851, E-ISSN 1741-2730, Vol. 5, no 3, 321-342 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Representative democracy is often assessed from the standpoint of direct democracy. Recently, however, many theorists have come to argue that representation forms a democratic model in its own right. The most powerful claim in this direction is to be found within two quite different strands of thinking: the aesthetic theory of Frank Ankersmit and the savage theory of Claude Lefort. In this article, I show that while Ankersmit and Lefort converge in their critique of direct rule, they provide us with two distinct models of democracy. Aesthetic democracy, I argue, in the end falls short as a democratic recuperation of representation. It reduces representation to delegation. Savage democracy proves more fruitful in this respect. It offers a representative view of politics without committing itself to the premises associated with political delegation
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Sage Publications, 2006. Vol. 5, no 3, 321-342 p.
action, aesthetics, Ankersmit, conflict, delegation, democracy, election, Lefort, representation, totalitarianism
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-230585DOI: 10.1177/1474885106064664OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-230585DiVA: diva2:741029