This unique and important new book looks at how we interpret the evidence of change and stability in modern parties and party systems. Focusing primarily on processes of political adaptation and control, it also concerns how parties and party systems generate their own momentum and `freeze' themselves into place. Amidst the widespread contemporary discussion of the challenge to modern democracy and the crisis of traditional forms of political representation, it offers a welcome emphasis on how party systems survive, and on how change, when it does occur, may be analysed and understood. The first part of the book deals with questions of persistence and change, and with the vulnerability and endurance of traditional parties. In the second part, attention shifts to the question of party organization, and to the ways in which the established parties are increasingly coming to invade the state, finding there a new source of privilege and a new means of ensuring their own survival. The third part of the book focuses on structures of competition in Western party systems, as well as on the problems associated with the consolidation of the new party systems in post-communist Europe. This is the first book to be entirely devoted to the question of party and party system change, and offers and essential guide to the understanding of this crucial theme.
`Peter Mair has produced a book that represents political science at its most erudite ... It is a learned work based on wide reading. It is brimming with references to the contributions of other scholars.' Times Higher Education Supplement Party specialists will be glad to have between one set of covers what is essentially a distillation of Mair's thinking over the past decade...this collection of articles and chapters does contain a hig degree of consistency. There is much shrewd observation and analysis in this book...a book that is stimulating for any party specialist and will inspire further research into the complex questions mapped out so clearly by the author. - David Hanley. By bringing together a wealth of theoretical and empirical material Mair skilfully traces a line of argument based on the notion of change rather than decline. Throughout the book Mair unremittingly puts his finger on major sources of confusion. This book constantly challenges the reader by posing many stimulating questions and suggesting possible lines of future debate and research. - Rosa Mule. Government and Opposition. 1998. ...useful both for teaching and reasearch. Explicitly and consistently comparative, the volume engages the reader in interesting discussions. This book constantly challenges the reader. Rosa Mule. Government and Opposition. 1998 Mair's insightful approaches invite more research on party system change, especially research that is systematic and empirical. - Sadafumi Kawato. Journal of Politics. 1998. the strength of the book is primarily the quality of hte individual chapters. - Lars Svasand. Political Studies. 1998.
Number Of Pages: 264
Published: 1st May 1997
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.2 x 15.44 x 2.31
Weight (kg): 0.46