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PSC 100 Chapter 7 Outline

PSC 100 Chapter 7 Outline - Chapter Seven Participation and...

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Chapter Seven: Participation and Voting Democracy and Political Participation How much and what kind of citizen participation is necessary for democratic government? The types of participation are: Conventional participation Unconventional participation Democracy and Political Participation (Cont’d) Political participation consists of the actions of private citizens seeking to influence or support government and politics. Most practical observers contend that people can govern indirectly, through their elected representatives. Democracy and Political Participation (Cont’d) Conventional participation consists of relatively routine behavior that uses the established institutions of representative government, especially campaigning for candidates and voting in elections. Political Participation: Voting (picture) Conventional Participation The two categories of conventional participation are: Actions that show support for government policies. Those actions that try to change or influence policies. Democracy and Political Participation (Cont’d) Unconventional participation includes relatively uncommon behavior that challenges or defies established institutions or the dominant culture (and thus is personally stressful to participants and their opponents). Unconventional Participation Direct action involves assembling crowds to confront businesses and local governments to demand a hearing. Most commonly appeals to people who distrust the political system and have a strong sense of political efficacy. Direct action: Picketing a Store (picture) Figure 7.1: What Americans Think Is Unconventional Political Behavior (chart) Unconventional: Students Occupy Columbia University, 1968 (picture) CWW 7.1: Popular Participation in Politics (chart) Conventional Participation: Signing a Petition (picture) Conventional Participation (Cont’d) A test of the democratic nature of any government is whether citizens can affect its policies by acting through its institutions. If people must operate outside governmental institutions to influence policymaking, the system is not democratic. Islamic Woman Voting (picture) Conventional Participation (Cont’d) The objective of democratic institutions is:
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To make political participation conventional To allow ordinary citizens to engage in relatively routine, nonthreatening behavior to get the government to head their opinions, interests and needs.
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