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Democracy and Elections$
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Richard S. Katz

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780195044294

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195044294.001.0001

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The Roles of Elections

The Roles of Elections

Chapter:
(p.100) 7 The Roles of Elections
Source:
Democracy and Elections
Author(s):

Richard S. Katz

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195044294.003.0007

This chapter examines the role of elections in the democratic process. It aims to provide an alternative structure for considering the expectations about, and evaluative standards for, elections raised by democratic theories. It discusses the equality element of democracy and suggests that though elections play a central role in all theories of democracy, the specific functions of elections vary tremendously from one conception of democracy to another. It concludes that a valid connection between electoral institutions and democratic values must be based on an accurate picture of the options available in the design of those institutions and of the consequences of choosing one option rather than another.

Keywords:   elections, democratic process, democratic theories, equality, electoral institutions, democratic values

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