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The Political Class in Advanced DemocraciesA Comparative Handbook$
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Jens Borchert and Jürgen Zeiss

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199260362

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0199260362.001.0001

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Sweden: Between Participation Ideal and Professionalism

Sweden: Between Participation Ideal and Professionalism

Chapter:
(p.352) 19 Sweden: Between Participation Ideal and Professionalism
Source:
The Political Class in Advanced Democracies
Author(s):

Magnus Hagevi

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199260362.003.0019

The participation ideal has affected Swedish politics in many ways and at first seems to contradict the notion of a professional political class. Yet, this has never been true for the national level and is less and less true for the local and regional level, the latter two often being a training ground for higher positions but also a career stage in their own right. It is unclear if a political class has already been established in Sweden – professional politicians may have made their careers quite safe, there is a social distinction (but take note of e.g. the high share of female politicians), and it is possible to live off politics (but not at a very high- level). However, a common class interest is hard to detect, and recent developments in public distrust of politicians and a resulting pressure for new political personnel could be a further hindrance towards the unrestrained development of a political class.

Keywords:   cartel parties, distrust, participation ideal, political class, regional party organizations, Sweden

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