Liberalism, Constitutionalism, and Democracy

Paperback | June 25, 2003

byRussell Hardin

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In his ground-breaking book, the leading political philosopher Russell Hardin develops a new theory of liberal constitutional democracy. Arguing against the standard consensus theories, the author shows how social co-ordination on limited, sociological mutual advantage lies at the heart ofliberal constitutionalism when it works to produce stable government.The book argues that liberalism, constitutionalism, and democracy are co-ordination theories. They work only in societies in which co-ordination of the important power groups for mutual advantage is feasible. It then goes on to examine and interpret the US constitution as motivated centrally by theconcern with creating a government to enable commerce. In addition, the book addresses the nature of the problems that the newly democratic, newly market-oriented states face. The analysis of constitutionalism is based on its workability, not on its intrinsic, normative, or universal appeals. Hardinargues, similarly, there are harsh limits on the possibilities of democracy. In general, democracy works only on the margins of great issues. Indeed, it is inherently a device for regulating marginal political conflicts.

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In his ground-breaking book, the leading political philosopher Russell Hardin develops a new theory of liberal constitutional democracy. Arguing against the standard consensus theories, the author shows how social co-ordination on limited, sociological mutual advantage lies at the heart ofliberal constitutionalism when it works to prod...

Russell Hardin is a Professor at the Department of Politics, New York University

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:400 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.84 inPublished:June 25, 2003Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199261687

ISBN - 13:9780199261680

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Table of Contents

1. MUTUAL ADVANTAGE2. LIBERALISM: POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC3. CONSTITUTIONALISM: CONTRACT OR COORDINATION4. DEMOCRACY: AGREEMENT OR ACQUIESCENCE?5. LIBERALIZATION AND ITS DISCONTENTS6. CONSTITUTIONAL ECONOMIC TRANSITION7. DEMOCRACY ON THE MARGINAfterword: WHETHER AGREED TO OR NOT

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`Illuminating.'TLS