Democratic Theory and Practice
Democratic Theory and Practice First Semester 2013 Potential Class Test Questions You are encouraged to prepare for this examination collectively, using whatever information you find relevant (e. g. class notes, readings, the library, throw the dice, etc…). At the same time, we will attach a great deal of weight to the originality of your answers (e. g. making insights, or using examples different to those we used in class). On Wednesday 20 March, you will have forty-five (45) minutes to answer some of the questions listed below.
Your answers will be evaluated on completeness, conciseness, organization and originality. Good luck! Part I. Identification (50%) In at most one paragraph, define and discuss the significance or relevance of the following (using examples to illustrate your points). Answer six of the following items. (You will be given 10 choices, of which you will have to answer 5) 1. Procedural Vs. Substantive Definitions of Democracy 2. Minimalist Vs Maximalist Definitions of Democracy 3. Procedural Prerequisite Vs.
Democratic Theory and Practice Essay Example
Behavioural Outcome Definitions of Democracy 4. Validity and Reliability 5. Transparency 6. Type of Data and Levels of Precision 7. Freedom House Index of Political Freedom 8. Przeworski / Cheibub Index of Autocracy/Democracy 9. Transition to Democracy 10. Legitimation Crisis 11. Hurting Stalemate 12. Liberalizing Vs. Democratizing Reforms 13. The Third Wave of Democratization 14. Positive Conjunctures of Democratization 15. The 1974 Portuguese Coup 16. The Unsolved Dilemmas of the Demos Kratia Part II. Essay (50%)
Answer one of the following questions. Be as complete as possible, and give examples to illustrate your arguments. (You will be given four and must answer one). 1. What do we know about the way in which countries transitioned to democracy in the latter 20th century? What are the key variables to consider in comparing transitions, especially in terms of whether or not the transition is successfully completed, and how the nature of the transition shapes subsequent prospects for the consolidation and quality of democracy? 2.
Critically compare and contrast South Africa’s transition to democracy with earlier Third Wave transitions in Southern Europe and Latin America, and also with contemporary Fourth Wave transitions in the rest of Sub-Saharan Africa. Is there any evidence that the path South Africa took to democracy has affected its current quality of democracy? / 3. How has the practice of democracy grown across the world, and over time? 4. Discuss the historical development of the idea of democracy, paying particular attention to its meaning, and its perceived importance.
Political scientist David Beetham has argued that while democracy is a contested concept, it is not a contestable concept. Is there only one valid way to define this term in the modern world, or are multiple definitions justifiable? 6. Is it possible to measure democracy scientifically? Or are existing measures of democracy simply reflections of the imposition of culturally specific understandings? Discuss in terms of the strengths and weakness of alternative data sets on democracy.