Historical Forms of State

Luiz Carlos Bresser-Pereira

in Democracy and Public Management Reform

Published in print August 2004 | ISBN: 9780199261185
Published online November 2004 | e-ISBN: 9780191601507 | DOI:
 Historical Forms of State

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A summary of the stages through which the modern state has passed historically. It began as authoritarian and patrimonial in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries: it was the absolutist state. In the nineteenth century, it turned liberal and bureaucratic: the liberal state imposed the rule of law and assured civil rights. In the first part of the twentieth century, the transition to democracy was completed: it was the time of the liberal state, of elitist or liberal democracy, and, still, of bureaucratic administration. In the second part of that century, the state becomes social-democratic, and assumes a developmental character; democracy now is social or plural rather than just liberal. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, the state is aiming to become social-liberal and republican; democracy is aiming to become participatory or republican; and administration is aiming to become managerial, or inspired by the principles of new public management.

Keywords: absolutist state; bureaucratic administration; democratic-liberal state; liberal state; new public management; patrimonial administration; plural democracy; republican democracy; republican state; social-democratic state

Chapter.  3031 words. 

Subjects: Politics

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