Beasts and Gods
How Democracy Changed Its Meaning and Lost Its PurposeeBook - 2015
Democracy does not deliver on the things we have assumed are its natural outcomes. This, coupled with a growing sense of malaise in both new and established democracies forms the basis to the assertion made by some, that these are not democracies at all.
Through considerable, impressive empirical analysis of a variety of voting methods, across twenty different nations, Roslyn Fuller presents the data that makes this contention indisputable. Proving that the party which forms the government rarely receives the majority of the popular vote, that electoral systems regularly produce manufactured majorities and that the better funded side invariably wins such contests in both elections and referenda, Fuller’s findings challenge the most fundamental elements of both national politics and broader society.
Beast and Gods argues for a return to democracy as perceived by the ancient Athenians. Boldly arguing for the necessity of the Aristotelian assumption that citizens are agents whose wishes and aims can be attained through participation in politics, and through an examination of what “goods” are provided by democracy, Fuller offers a powerful challenge to the contemporary liberal view that there are no "goods" in politics, only individual citizens seeking to fulfil their particular interests.
An extraordinary historical, political and philosophical work that is set to not only reconfigure our understanding of democracy, but to challenge the individualistic basis of the modern liberal politics.