Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Democracy and the Cartelization of Political Parties$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Richard S. Katz and Peter Mair

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780199586011

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199586011.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 07 March 2021

The Problem

The Problem

(p.1) 1 The Problem
Democracy and the Cartelization of Political Parties

Richard S. Katz

Peter Mair

Oxford University Press

Most conventional conceptions of what democracy is and of how it should be organized imply particular characteristics and functions for parties and party systems, and particular kinds of relationships among parties, citizens, and the state. Our contention is that the party government model so conceived, while quite powerful prescriptively, has only a marginal connection to the way parties and party system really work in the early twenty-first century. Our basic argument is that at the level of party systems, the mainstream parties, and most minor parties as well, have effectively formed a cartel. While the appearance of competition is preserved, in terms of political substance it has become spectacle—a show for the audience of audience democracy.

Keywords:   mass party, cartel party, democracy, party government, principal-agent

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .