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Trust the People! Populism and the Two Faces of Democracy

Trust the People! Populism and the Two Faces of Democracy Populism, understood as an appeal to ‘the people’ against both the established structure of power and the dominant ideas and values, should not be dismissed as a pathological form of politics of no interest to the political theorist, for its democratic pretensions raise important issues. Adapting Michael Oakeshott's distinction between ‘the politics of faith’ and ‘the politics of scepticism’, the paper offers an analysis of democracy in terms of two opposing faces, one ‘pragmatic’ and the other ‘redemptive’, and argues that it is the inescapable tension between them that makes populism a perennial possibility. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Political Studies SAGE

Trust the People! Populism and the Two Faces of Democracy

Political Studies , Volume 47 (1): 15 – Mar 1, 1999

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References (13)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© 1999 Political Studies Association
ISSN
0032-3217
eISSN
1467-9248
DOI
10.1111/1467-9248.00184
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Populism, understood as an appeal to ‘the people’ against both the established structure of power and the dominant ideas and values, should not be dismissed as a pathological form of politics of no interest to the political theorist, for its democratic pretensions raise important issues. Adapting Michael Oakeshott's distinction between ‘the politics of faith’ and ‘the politics of scepticism’, the paper offers an analysis of democracy in terms of two opposing faces, one ‘pragmatic’ and the other ‘redemptive’, and argues that it is the inescapable tension between them that makes populism a perennial possibility.

Journal

Political StudiesSAGE

Published: Mar 1, 1999

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