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By Gideon Baker

This booklet addresses the debates round civil society, utilizing democratic conception and case reports drawn from jap Europe and Latin the USA. It strikes past the exclusively theoretical to ascertain the connection among the assumption of civil society as democratic thought and democratic perform.

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Example text

As a category that had previously been seen to lack any significance in situating a radical, transformatory politics, the putative significance of civil society within the Polish context – as the site of political opposition and democratisation – gave the concept a new lease of life in political theory. The more Gramscian sense – though without Gramsci’s Marxist teleology – of civil society as a potentially autonomous sphere inhabited by counter-hegemonical forces began to appear everywhere from this point on.

The notion of legality implied operating publicly and openly in the face of the arbitrary abuse of power, and was therefore seen as a mainstay of the opposition programme (Havel 1985: 69). The rule of law was also perceived as limiting political power.

Although he conceded that liberal democracies have many important insights to bestow, Battek had in mind ‘the future democratic, self-managing socialist society’, a society needed throughout ‘the world of today’ given the ‘unjustified, unwarranted class privileges’ that obtain in both East and West (1985: 108). What then, exactly, does liberal democracy have to contribute to this vision of a ‘third way’? Battek, 40 The parallel polis representatively of Chartism at this point, was somewhat vague here.

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