MODELS OF PERSISTENCE AND CHANGE IN MODERN PARTY SYSTEMS
Gábor Tóka
Winter/Spring 1995
Department of Political Science
CENTRAL EUROPEAN UNIVERSITY



Course Description

The course reviews the major theoretical propositions, research programs and methods concerning the development of political parties and their functions in representative democracies. Special attention will be devoted to the prospects and limits to constitutional engineering in making electoral democracy effective and consolidated. The impact of election laws and the broader institutional framework on party systems, party governmentness, and the size, stability and program of government coalitions will receive detailed examination.

Students' performance will be evaluated on the basis of in-class tests (50%) and activity (10%), and their written homework (40%).

First topic.

Some basic concepts and their normative environment: social choice, direct democracy, representative democracy, majority rule, unanimity rule, minority veto.
Requested readings:
Reeve, Andrew, and Alan,Ware, 1992. Electoral Systems. London: Routledge, 17-43.
Steiner, Jürg, 1991. European Democracies. New York: Longman, 2nd edition, pp. 173-182.
Coleman, James S., 1992. "Democracy in Permanently Divided Systems." In: Reexamining Democracy, ed. Gary Marks and Larry Jay Diamond. Newbury Park, Calif.: Sage, pp. 17-26.

Second topic.
The positive properties of majority rule and the paradox of voting: strategic voting under majoritarian electoral procedures.
Requested readings:
Riker, William H., 1982. Liberalism Against Populism: A Confrontation Between the Theory of Democracy and the Theory of Social Choice. Prospect Heights, Ill.: Waveland Press, pp. 1-3, 4-14, 21-65.

Third topic.
The manifest functions, genesis, and autonomy of political parties; Party government and its major alternatives.
Requested readings:
Duverger, Maurice, (1951) 1964. Political Parties. Their Organization and Activity in the Modern State. London: Methuen, 2nd revised English edition. Introduction. The Origin of Parties, pp. xxiii-xxxvii.
Katz, Richard S., 1987. "Party Government and Its Alternatives." In: Party Government: European and American Experiences, ed. Richard S. Katz. Berlin and New York: Walter de Gruyter, 1-26.
Fiorina, Morris P., 1987. "Party Government in the United States: Diagnosis and Prognosis." In: Party Government. European and American Experiences, ed. Richard S. Katz. Berlin and New York: Walter de Gruyter, 270-300.

Fourth topic.
Electoral arrangements and models of political representation.
Requested readings:
Powell, G. Bingham Jr., 1989. "Constitutional Design and Citizen Electoral Control." Journal of Theoretical Politics, 1 (2): 107-130.
Duverger, Maurice, 1984. "What Is the Best Electoral System?" In: Choosing an Electoral System. Issues and Alternatives. and Their Political Consequences, ed. Arend Lijphart and Bernd Grofman. 1984. New York: Praeger, pp. 31-40.
Lakeman, Enid, 1984. "The Case for Proportional Representation." In: Choosing an Electoral System. Issues and Alternatives. and Their Political Consequences, ed. Arend Lijphart and Bernd Grofman. 1984. New York: Praeger, pp. 41-52.
Lijphart, Arend, 1984. "Trying to Have the Best of Both Worlds: Semi-Proportional and Mixed Systems." In: Choosing an Electoral System: Issues and Alternatives. and Their Political Consequences, ed. Arend Lijphart and Bernd Grofman. 1984. New York: Praeger, pp. 207-215.

Fifth topic.
Government formation.
Requested readings:
Steiner, Jürg, 1991. European Democracies. New York: Longman, 2nd edition, pp. 109-133.
Gallagher, Tom, Michael Laver, and Peter Mair, 1992. Representative Government in Western Europe. New York: McGraw-Hill, pp. 173-211.

Sixth topic.
The functioning and impact of minority and oversized governments.
Requested readings:
Strom, Kaare, 1990. Minority Government and Majority Rule. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp.38-81, 90-91.

Seventh topic.
Polarized pluralism in theory and practice.
Requested readings:
Sartori, Giovanni, 1990. "A Typology of Party Systems." In: The West European Party System, ed. Peter Mair. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 91-138. (Abridged version of chapter 5, 6, and 9 of G. S., 1976. Parties and Party System. A Framework for Analysis. Vol. 1. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.)
Bartolini, Stefano, 1984. "Institutional Constraints and Party Competition in the French Party System. " West European Politics 7: 103-127.

Eighth topic.
An overview of the party identification and the rational choice models of electoral decisions.
Requested readings:
Harrop, Martin, and William L. Miller, 1987. Elections and Voters. A Comparative Introduction. London: Macmillan, 101-125, 130-162.

Ninth topic.
The spatial model of party competition: its implications, critics, and alternatives.
Requested readings:
Kitschelt, Herbert, 1992. "The Formation of Party Systems in East Central Europe." Politics and Society 20: 7-50 (parts of the text, pp. 10-50).

Tenth topic.
Segmented electoral markets and party fragmentation: the contributions of cleavage theory.
Requested readings:
Lipset, Seymour M. and Stein Rokkan, 1967. "Cleavage Structures, Party Systems and Voter Alignments. Introduction" In: Party Systems and Voter Alignments. Cross-National Perspectives, ed. Seymour M. Lipset, and Stein Rokkan. New York: The Free Press, 164. Abridged version in The West European Party System, ed. Peter Mair. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 91-138.

Eleventh topic.
The concept, functions, measurement, and determinants of electoral volatility.
Requested readings:
Bartolini, Stefano, and Peter Mair, 1990. Identity, Competition, and Electoral Availability. The Stabilisation of the European Electorates 1885-1985. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1-4, 20-23, 26-29, 37-46, 68-95. Copy in CEUL.

Twelfth topic.
The internal structure of political parties.
Requested readings:
Gallagher, Tom, Michael Laver, and Peter Mair, 1992. Representative Government in Western Europe. New York: McGraw-Hill, 119-141.



CRC-Curriculum Resource Center
CEU Budapest, Hungary
Modified: July, 1996

Tok_ModelPCh.W95PS.v3

Back to the Political Science Syllabi List Back to the Syllabi Collection

Back to the CRC Homepage Back to the CEU Homepage