This book introduces radically alternative models of civil society that have been developed outside the liberal democratic frame of reference, models which suggest that civil society does offer new and non-statist democratic possibilities. Drawing on a wide range of civil society theory-practice from Eastern Europe and Latin America (including the Zapatistas in Mexico), and from visions of global civil society too, this book is uniquely positioned to consider the questions posed by these alternative voices for democratic theory and practice.
* Are there alternatives to the liberal democratic vision of civil society?
* Is a democracy located in civil society rather than the state either possible or desirable?
* How and why has the concept of civil society come to be used so widely today?
* Can global civil society further the struggle for democracy initiated by national civil societies?
Table of Contents
Part I: The Parallel Polis: Central-East European Models of Civil Society
Part II: Democracy at the Grass Roots: Latin American
Part III: The Taming of the Idea of Civil Society Since
Part IV: New Alternatives?
Part V: The Democracy of Civil Society: Theory and Practice
Gideon Baker is Lecturer in Political Theory in the School of English, Sociology, Politics and Contemporary History at the University of Salford. He has published articles in various journals including Contemporary Politics, Democratization and Politics.
'...a very useful book around which to organinize an undergraduate course on civil society.'^ - Political Studies Review, Roland Axtmann, University of Aberdeen