The Quality of Democracy: Addressing Inequality

Issue Date October 2004
Volume 15
Issue 4
Page Numbers 76-90
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As part of the project to examine the quality of existing democracies, this paper examines political in/equality. Political equality must be analyzed in relation to the main dimensions of social inequality — class, status and power. The paper considers the normative merits as well as the chances of advancing political equality, focusing first on measures within the political sphere and then on policies that tackle social and economic inequality. It reviews the power resources in economy and society that are most important for increases or decreases of political inequality. And it considers how the levels of political inequality can be assessed in cross-national comparisons.

About the Author

Dietrich Rueschemeyer is professor of sociology and Charles C. Tillinghast, Jr., Professor of International Studies Emeritus at Brown University. He currently holds an appointment as research professor at Brown’s Watson Institute of International Studies.

View all work by Dietrich Rueschemeyer