Can Democracy Work? : A Short History Of A Radical Idea, From Ancient Athens To Our World

by: Prof. James Miller
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The ancient Greeks chose their leaders by lottery because they saw elections as inherently corrupt and undemocratic. Indeed, for much of human history, democracy was a dirty word. Today it is held up as the logical culmination of human affairs, invoked to support the vast majority of governments around the world. But if both North Korea and the United States consider themselves democratic and so do liberals and conservatives, capitalists and communists, bureaucrats and populists isn t the idea meaningless? This is the biography of one of the world s most powerful ideas, a two-thousand-year battle between abstract rights and passionate convictions. From lofty philosophical debate to violent uprising, Can Democracy Work? reveals a troubled history and argues that, for better or worse, only the people can decide its fate.

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