Miscellaneous (한 + EN)

Adam Przeworski

2020-03-24 00:42
We are going through times when the value, the feasibility, and the prospects of democracy are under scrutiny in different parts of the world. ... insufficient to explain the coexistence of democracy and inequality ...

There is one answer about which I feel quite confident, an answer that goes back to Popper (1962) and Bobbio (1987), namely that democracy is the only system that allows people to live in freedom and peace. Democracy is a system in which whatever conflicts emerge in a society are processed by periodic elections. Between elections, the losers wait to get their chance the next time around, or the one after that. Elections induce peace because they enable intertemporal horizons. Even if one thinks that people care about outcomes rather than procedures, the prospect that parties sympathetic to their interests may gain the reins of government generates hope and induces patience. For many, the American election of 2000 was a disaster, but we knew that there would be another one in 2004. When the 2004 election ended up even worse, we still hoped for 2008. And, as unbelievable as it still appears, the country that elected and re-elected Bush and Cheney voted for Obama. Elections are the Sirens of democracy. They incessantly rekindle our hopes. We are repeatedly eager to be lured by promises, to put our stakes on electoral bets. Hence, we obey and wait.

... The ideas that the prospects for democracy were determined by what happened to agrarian class structure two centuries ago or secreted by the level of economic development were of no use for people who were asking "how to."

— Przeworski, A. (2016). Democracy: A never-ending quest. Annual Review of Political Science, 19, 1-12. doi: 10.1146/annurev-polisci-021113-122919

내가 당면한 우리 시대의 질문은 무엇이며, 그것을 '지적'하기 위함이 아닌 '해결'하기 위한 연구는 어떠한 자취를 남겨야 하는가. 그 속에서도 끝끝내 낙관적인 자세를 잃지 않고 싶다... 🙂