This book provides a distinctive new introduction to the study of comparative politics at undergraduate level. Rich in case study material and global in coverage, Comparative Politics sets out the basic theoretical and methodological foundations for studying different political systems as well as the key structures and actors of which they are comprised.
Chapter 4: Electoral Systems
Using the three theoretical perspectives introduced earlier, this chapter will now consider the nature of electoral systems and their relationships with the broader political arena, paying special attention to effects for party systems and government formation.
Despite being one of the cornerstones of liberal democratic legitimacy, elections are increasingly treated with something little short of contempt in precisely those nations where their presence has acted as a model to other developing democracies. In the recent past, it has been a rare election in any Western democracy at which declining turnout, voter apathy, political disengagement or some other form of negative perception of the ballot box and those who use it to run for power has not arisen as an issue. The ...