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Authoritarian deliberation in China

journal contribution
posted on 01.01.2017, 00:00 authored by Baogang HeBaogang He, M E Warren
Authoritarian rule in China increasingly involves a wide variety of deliberative practices. These practices combine authoritarian command with deliberative influence, producing the apparent anomaly of authoritarian deliberation. Although deliberation and democracy are usually found together, they are distinct phenomena. Democracy involves the inclusion of individuals in matters that affect them through distributions of empowerments like votes and rights. Deliberation is the kind of communication that involves persuasion-based influence. Combinations of command-based power and deliberative influence– like authoritarian deliberation–are now pervading Chinese politics, likely a consequence of the failures of command authoritarianism under the conditions of complexity and pluralism produced by market oriented development. The concept of authoritarian deliberation frames two possible trajectories of political development in China. One possibility is that the increasing use of deliberative practices stabilizes and strengthens authoritarian rule. An alternative possibility is that deliberative practices serve as a leading edge of democratization.

History

Journal

Daedalus

Volume

146

Issue

3

Season

Summer

Pagination

155 - 166

Publisher

American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Location

Cambridge, Mass.

ISSN

0011-5266

eISSN

1548-6192

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2017, American Academy of Arts & Sciences