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Democratic FailureNOMOS LXIII$
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Melissa Schwartzberg and Daniel Viehoff

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781479804788

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479804788.001.0001

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Failing Democracy

Failing Democracy

(p.50) 2 Failing Democracy
Democratic Failure

Gerald J. Postema

NYU Press

This chapter explores a set of modalities of democratic failure in response to Aziz Huq’s analysis of failure. Not all of the disappointments produced by democratic decision-making should be construed as failures, and we should distinguish between “intransitive” and “transitive” failing, i.e., between “failed democracy” and a community’s “failing democracy.” Although democratic institutions and constitutional practices may be deformed, democratic failure may also derive from participants’ unwillingness to hold other agents accountable for defying democratic norms and values.

Keywords:   democracy, democratic failure, constitutional practices, accountability

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