Chapter

Debating democracy

Randall Peerenboom

in China Modernizes

Published in print April 2008 | ISBN: 9780199226122
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191696183 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199226122.003.0007
Debating democracy

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This chapter considers the possible lessons Chinese leaders and citizens derived from the experiences of developing countries in Asia and other democratic countries. It examines the ongoing debates about democracy. It claims that many of the countries in Asia that democratized at lower levels of wealth have encountered difficulties sustaining economic growth, achieving political stability, and consolidating democracy. Meanwhile, East Asian countries that democratized at higher levels of wealth have been more stable and prosperous. It examines the affirmative view of modernity and gives evidence that it does not live up to the hype in most Asian countries. The chapter concludes that democratization would be counterproductive to China in the present climate. It also suggests that China is likely to hold a form of nonliberal elitist democracy if it does democratize.

Keywords: democracy; wealth; economic growth; Asia; affirmative view; modernity; democratization; elitist democracy; political stability

Chapter.  8484 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management

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