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Party Organisation, Campaigning and Voter Contact

  • A. H. Somjee

Abstract

In various scholarly writings on party organisation, relating to Western as well as Indian democracy, a number of models have been proposed to interpret the social bases and functions of political parties in those societies. Most of these models tend to treat political parties as formal political structures prescribing a number of specific roles to their members. In this chapter, however, I shall argue that such an emphasis tends to leave out a whole range of operative relationships between the members of competing political parties on the one hand, and of party members and the public on the other. Such relationships fall outside the formal role-definition of the members. These relationships, nevertheless, become of paramount importance in understanding party organisations in India, where members do not don the party uniform all the time but tend to return to their normal social ties in between elections, and in most cases alternate between party strife and inter-party accommodation.

Keywords

Party Worker Linkage Activity Operational Linkage Opposition Parti Political Parti 
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Notes

  1. 1.
    Robert R. Alford, Party and Society: The Anglo-American Democracies (New York: Rand McNally & Co., 1964) pp. X–XI.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    See S. M. Lipset, The Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics (London: Heinemann, 1960) pp. 63–4.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
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  4. 4.
    See in this connection Robert MacKenzie and Allan Silver, Angel in Marble: Working Class Conservatives in Urban England (London: Heinemann, 1968) p. vi.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    S. M. Lipset and S. Rokkan (eds), Party System and Voter Alignments ( New York: The Free Press, 1967 ); see the Introduction.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    W. H. Morris Jones, ‘Dominance and Dissent: Their Inter-relations in the Indian Party System’ Government and Opposition, vol. I (1965–6) p. 455.Google Scholar
  7. 9.
    Avery Leiserson, Parties and Politics ( New York: Knopf, 1958 ) p. 177.Google Scholar
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    Myron Weiner, Party Building in a New State ( Chicago: Chicago University Press, 1967 ) p. 15.Google Scholar
  9. 11.
    S.J. Eldersveld, Political Parties: A Behavioral Analysis ( Chicago: Rand McNally & Co., 1964 ) p. I.Google Scholar
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    See in this connection G. A. Almond and G. B. Powell, Comparative Politics: A Development Approach ( Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1966 ) pp. 98–128.Google Scholar
  11. 13.
    Kay Lawson, The Comparative Study of Political Parties ( New York: St Martin’s Press, 1976 ).Google Scholar
  12. 14.
    See in this connection Morton Grodzin’s paper, ‘Political Parties and the Crisis of Succession in the United States: The Case of 1800,’ in Joseph LaPalombara and Myron Weiner (eds), Political Parties and Political Development ( Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1966 ) pp. 317–23.Google Scholar
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    Morarji Desai, Facts You Must Know (1971).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© A. H. Somjee 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. H. Somjee

There are no affiliations available

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