Drawing on political, legal, national, post-national, as well as American and European perspectives, this collection of essays offers a diverse and balanced discussion of the current arguments concerning deliberative democracy. Its contributions' focus on discontent, provide a critical assessment of the benefits of deliberation and also respond to the strongest criticisms of the idea of democratic deliberation. The essays consider the three basic questions of why, how and where to deliberate democratically. This book will be of value not only to political and democratic theorists, but also to legal philosophers and constitutional theorists, and all those interested in the legitimacy of decision-making in national and post-national pluralistic polities.
'This scholarly, rigorous and exhaustive treatment of deliberative democracy is likely to be a central reference point for many years to come. Its refusal to endorse truisms or revert to ideological markers mean that neither opponents nor supporters of deliberative democracy will be able to ignore its arguments.' Damian Chalmers, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK 'It is clear: the questions that this volume addresses on the theory of deliberative democracy are equally serious, pertinent and fruitful. The principle merit of its contributors is that they take seriously the deliberative ideal without this false naivety that can sometimes be found amongst other advocates. Refusing to limit themselves to a purely conceptual approach, [the contributors] aim rather to address the fundamental problems unearthed by the deliberative ideal in the light of a practical reflection on its performance conditions. Above and beyond the conclusions they reach, it is the originality and fruitfulness of this process that must be praised.' Revue Philosophique de Louvain