Liberal Democracy

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Liberal democracy

Introduction

To begin with Francis Fukuyama's, provocative thesis, that after the fall of communism in Europe and the withering of the grand ideological contests, history too has ended. In his "end of history" theory, he maintained that the western liberal democracy had become the `final form of human government'. The fact is that though not all theorists have this kind of a faith in liberal democracy, and believe that it's not the only feasible form of democracy, they are in a minority. The theoretical circles and the popular discourse have been dominated by "liberal democracy."

John Stuart mill's essay "on liberalism and considerations of representative government" is often considered as the first systematic explication and defense of liberal democracy. A prodemocrat he welcomed the progress in equality, yet identified with toqueville's warning about the tyranny of the majority. In particular he agreed with the claims that majority mass culture stifles free and informed thought and that an omnipotent majority mat oppress a minority. Mill's essay in large may be read as a sustained effort to confront this problem by the straightforward method of combining democracy and liberalism.

With the emergence of large democratic nations, he believed there was a need for the people to `limit their power over themselves', and seeks to identify the principles according to which people should set limitations. He thus prescribed against government paternalism and overt tyranny, and favored what is called "pluralist mandate", where the citizens as far as possible are able to pursue what they see as their own goods and in their own ways.

Major tenets or principle...

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...berships, liberal democrats should support multicultural group rights, since these memberships provide a `context of choice' essential for autonomous action.

F) A political sense of individualism is central to liberal democracy. It states that whatever the causal origins of people's preferences, social arrangements at least as far as the government can affect them, must respect individual freedom to act on their preferences rather than being obliged to forego this ability or to adjust their preferences to socially determined goals.

Freedom and autonomy- there are alternative conceptions of personhood, within liberal-democratic theory. The determinist and the autonomist camp, are, respectively that the state ought to enable the people as far as possible to act on their preferences or that it ought to preserve the ability of the people to revise their goals.

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