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Rebel Mystic: Toward a Theorization of the Aesthetic and Communicative Dimensions of Reggae and Dub
Unformatted Document Text:  4 citizens are politically equal is not all clear but it is usually assumed to be self-evident. Natural or moral principles of equal and free birth are commonly invoked as a justification for advancing the idea of political equality. On the other hand, modern democratic theory recognizes that political equality among citizens of a given society may not entirely be achievable (See Sartori, G., 1962 for instance). This could be mainly due to, as I will show later, the presence of some inherent tension between individual liberty and equality. 2 Yet, the presence of fundamental rights like political and civil liberties is less contested. However, major shortcomings in these contending theories of democracy do exist. There are at least two problems with the classical democratic theory: first, it is applicable more to small city-states than to modern nation states. Face- to-face political participation and deliberations are easier to conduct in small communities. The politically active citizen of the classical Greek city-states is simply non-existent in modern democracies. Modern democrats are politically active but compared to their Greek counterparts they are not as active (See also Almond, G. and S. Verba, 1963). Second, the conditions under which political equality is possible are not spelled out; it is simply asserted as a self-evident truth. There is no strong consensus among citizens and scholars in such an assertion. Indeed, there are those who believe that individual liberty, which is promoted in modern democracies, leads necessarily to some form of inequality, not to perfect equality (See Freedman, M., 1962 for instance). On the other hand, the procedural theory of democracy does not fully account for the variation in the distribution of political power or influence among citizens. For instance, why is it that some citizens could exert more influence on political leaders than do 2 I will show later, however, that equality and liberty also complement each other.

Authors: Tracy, James.
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4
citizens are politically equal is not all clear but it is usually assumed to be self-evident.
Natural or moral principles of equal and free birth are commonly invoked as a
justification for advancing the idea of political equality. On the other hand, modern
democratic theory recognizes that political equality among citizens of a given society
may not entirely be achievable (See Sartori, G., 1962 for instance). This could be mainly
due to, as I will show later, the presence of some inherent tension between individual
liberty and equality.
2
Yet, the presence of fundamental rights like political and civil
liberties is less contested. However, major shortcomings in these contending theories of
democracy do exist. There are at least two problems with the classical democratic
theory: first, it is applicable more to small city-states than to modern nation states. Face-
to-face political participation and deliberations are easier to conduct in small
communities. The politically active citizen of the classical Greek city-states is simply
non-existent in modern democracies. Modern democrats are politically active but
compared to their Greek counterparts they are not as active (See also Almond, G. and S.
Verba, 1963). Second, the conditions under which political equality is possible are not
spelled out; it is simply asserted as a self-evident truth. There is no strong consensus
among citizens and scholars in such an assertion. Indeed, there are those who believe
that individual liberty, which is promoted in modern democracies, leads necessarily to
some form of inequality, not to perfect equality (See Freedman, M., 1962 for instance).
On the other hand, the procedural theory of democracy does not fully account for the
variation in the distribution of political power or influence among citizens. For instance,
why is it that some citizens could exert more influence on political leaders than do
2
I will show later, however, that equality and liberty also complement each other.


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