Celebrations of the global triumph of liberal capitalist democracy have been cut short by stark failings in the practice of newly democratic governments. Around half the world’s states can now claim to protect basic political rights and to have instituted regular multi-party elections. Yet the new democracies continue to be dominated by clientelism, social division and class conflict. Moreover, they display multifaceted institutional weakness. Political participation remains at a low level, local democracy and civic institutions are fragile, and corruption threatens to negate the gains that democracy might bring.
KeywordsPolitical Science Democratic Government Comparative Politics Democratic Transition Historical Writing
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- 1.See A.M. Butler, ‘Unpopular Leaders: the British Case’, Political Studies 43 (1995) 48–65; A. Hadenius, ‘Victory and Crisis’, in Hadenius (ed.), Democracy’s Victory and Crisis: Nobel Symposium No. 93 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997) 1–14.Google Scholar