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Democratizing InequalitiesDilemmas of the New Public Participation$
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Caroline W. Lee, Michael McQuarrie, and Edward T. Walker

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781479847273

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479847273.001.0001

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Public Deliberation and Political Contention

Public Deliberation and Political Contention

(p.222) Chapter 12 Public Deliberation and Political Contention
Democratizing Inequalities

Francesca Polletta

NYU Press

This chapter explores participatory opportunities in the boundary between “deliberation” and “public contention.” It considers the relation between deliberation and protest, whether deliberation makes protest unnecessary or whether the institutionalization of deliberation makes protest even more necessary, and whether protest and deliberation should coexist in a vibrant democracy. The chapter begins with an overview of protests as alternative to aggregative politics before turning to a discussion of the link between public deliberation and inequality and the impact of activism on deliberative democracy. Citing evidence from different countries such as Brazil, Australia, Germany, South Africa, and the United States, it shows that the presence of activists can foster good deliberation rather than threaten it.

Keywords:   public contention, protests, aggregative politics, public deliberation, inequality, activism, deliberative democracy

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