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The Centre on Social Movement Studies

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Non-deliberative politics in deliberative democracy: distinct approaches for different actors

Andrea Felicetti

In this paper Andrea Felicetti first illustrates the main ideas of the systemic turn, explores the distinction between ‘deliberative’ and ‘non-deliberative’ politics and investigates the main arguments justifying non-deliberative politics. Then, he builds upon these arguments to shed new light on the relationship between deliberative and non-deliberative politics. He identifies three distinctive actors in deliberative systems (political institutions, empowered agents, and public space actors). Finally, he argues that deliberative democrats should adopt three different approaches (intensive, moderate, and free) in order to assess whether the use of non-deliberative politics by each of these actors is legitimate.

Type: Journal Article
Year: 2017

This article advances one of the most important debates in recent scholarship on democratic theory: the one on deliberative systems. In the wake of the systemic turn deliberative scholars agree that not all components of a deliberative system can or even need to be deliberative. However, there is little clarity about the role of non-deliberative politics in a system and to what extent these are justifiable while we seek a more deliberative society. In this paper I first illustrate the main ideas of the systemic turn, explore the distinction between ‘deliberative’ and ‘non-deliberative’ politics and investigate the main arguments justifying non-deliberative politics. Then, I build upon these arguments to shed new light on the relationship between deliberative and non-deliberative politics. I identify three distinctive actors in deliberative systems (political institutions, empowered agents, and public space actors). Finally, I argue that deliberative democrats should adopt three different approaches (intensive, moderate, and free) in order to assess whether the use of non-deliberative politics by each of these actors is legitimate.

Felicetti, A. (2017). Non-deliberative politics in deliberative democracy: Distinct approaches for different actors. Italian Political Science Review/Rivista Italiana Di Scienza Politica, 1-21. doi:10.1017/ipo.2017.16

https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/italian-political-science-review-rivista-italiana-di-scienza-politica/article/nondeliberative-politics-in-deliberative-democracy-distinct-approaches-for-different-actors/05471A5604B32CA6886647CD22EB56B5

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