Meaning Of Democracy

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The Meaning of Democracy Kayla Arnold- 20279752 The concept of democracy has had multiple meanings throughout history, and continues to be interpreted and practiced in many different ways in current times. In examining the original etymology and meaning of the word ‘’democracy’’, looking at democratic structure, aims and how it works in practice, different researchers have provided varying understandings of the concept. Through the following journals’ arguments on the meaning of democracy, from focusing on social welfare, representation in government by the people to economic freedom and human rights, it is clear that the meaning is debatable and fluid depending on what factors are emphasised. Walter James Shepard, author of ‘’The Annals of…show more content…
Merriam supports some of Shepard’s opinions, but stresses factors like the ability to change, and the recruitment of leadership based on merit as more paramount to the concept of democracy. He sees democracy as the underlying principle to a form of political association based on participation and consent of the community. This view of democracy promotes unleashing the potential of humans, protecting the dignity of man with welfare, freedom and justice, a government based on common consent and decision making and uplifting the majority rather than the few. He claims that there three bases make up the modern meaning of democracy. The first is the intellectual side- involving the theory of democratic political association, the second is the structure and understanding about the concept and application of democracy and lastly, the programmes put in place to maintain democratic ideology in…show more content…
It claims that the most widely used indicator of a democratic society is the citizens’ participation in free and fair elections, and whether these elections determine government action. Following in the election issue, this view of democracy requires multi-party competition and majority rule. The journal states that another way of looking at democracy is not by its practices, but by its goals and the means used to achieve them. The authors note that the essential goals of liberty and freedom, as emphasised in the United States Declaration of Independence, tend to attract people’s support even if they are unclear about the parameters of democracy. A third concept of democracy that the journal puts forward is the social dimension, which is especially prevalent in low-income nations. This shifts the focus to social rights of the society – emphasising that care for the needy and general welfare is a prerequisite for political equality and

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