Is Inequality a Threat to Democracy?

John Ferejohn

in The Unsustainable American State

Published in print October 2009 | ISBN: 9780195392135
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199852543 | DOI:
Is Inequality a Threat to Democracy?

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Many believe that the government bears an active role and responsibility on how wealth and income are generated and distributed. With the rapid increase in income inequality in a number of the advanced democracies, it has now become a concern on whether or not this should be considered as a threat. This chapter first examines what types of equality brings concern to the people. An outline of a normative theory of legitimacy which roots regime legitimacy in the satisfaction of an “interest tracking” condition and a political theory suggesting how income inequality can weaken democratic rule is then given.

Keywords: income inequality; normative theory of legitimacy; inequality; democratic rule

Chapter.  12062 words. 

Subjects: US Politics

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