With public confidence in representative institutions dropping to
distressing levels, it is time for political theorists to turn their
attention to representation, and to reconceive its normative
foundations and connections to other aspects of a revived public
This volume investigates theoretical and practical aspects of
innovative political representation in the early 21st century. Some
contributors tackle problematic dimensions of representation head on,
while others explore democratic participation and deliberation,
multicultural pluralism, contested citizenship, and other background
conditions of contemporary representation. Still others consider the
challenges posed to representation by national minorities, national
boundaries, multinational and federal governance, and cultural and
social obstacles to either individual or group autonomy. Throughout,
the volume reveals the complexity of contemporary political
representation, and demonstrates how normative attention to the problem
of representation can crystallize and illuminate debates over the
nature of justice, equality, citizenship and deliberation in modern
A crucial supplement to empirical studies of conventional political
representation, Representation and Democratic Theory offers a timely
and thought-provoking contribution to contemporary democratic theory.
It will be a necessary and welcome addition to the libraries of many
political and social scientists.
David Laycock is a professor in the Department of Political Science at Simon Fraser University.
Acknowledgments Introduction / David Laycock Part 1: Representation in Response to Minority Rights, Multiculturalism and Institutional Complexity 1. When (if ever) Are Referendums on Minority Rights Fair? / Avigail Eisenberg 2. Language, Representation, and Suprastate Democracy: Questions Facing the European Union / Peter Ives 3. Getting to Yes: People, Practices, and the Paradox of Multicultural Democracy / Catherine Frost 4. Feminist Engagement with Federal Institutions: Opportunities and Constraints for Women's Multilevel Citizenship / Louise Chappell Part 2: Reconceiving Representation through Citizenship and Community 5. Sharing the River: Aboriginal Representation in Canadian Political Institutions / Melissa S. Williams 6. The Self-Government of Unbounded Communities: Emancipatory Minority Autonomy in China and Western Europe / Susan J. Henders 7. What Do Citizens Need to Share? Citizenship as Reasonableness / Jonathan Quong Part 3: Pluralist, Deliberative, and Participatory Challenges to Representation 8. The New Constitutionalism and the Polarizing Performance of the Canadian Conversation / Gerald Kernerman 9. Demanding Deliberative Democracy and Representation / Greg Pyrcz 10. What Can Democratic Participation Mean Today? / Mark E. Warren 11. Representing Pluralism: A Comment on Pyrcz, Warren, and Kernerman / Simone Chambers Conclusion References Notes on Contributors Index