Explain & Analyse three theories on the effect of pressure groups on democracyWatch this thread
Think it’s about
But I dunno what I’m supposed to write in each paragraph :/
Anyway, on with the show Mr Prime Minister...
- Pluralism is the theory that political power is widely distributed in a society, with pressure groups acting as agents to assist this distribution, with the government being responsible for a wide range of causes and interests. Pluralists believe that pressure-group activity is an active element that drives a democratic society through the competition of different pressure/interest groups (with no single dominating group and power being shared between them, evidence being seen in R. A. Dahl's Who Governs? in 1961) for influence over decision makers, as they agree on the fact that individuals themselves have little say over political decisions in democracies. Pluralists hold the idea that the government is the neutral arbiter between pressure groups, and they see pressure groups as essential for a democracy to continue existing.
- On the contrary, elitism is the theory that power is concentrated and not evenly distributed. Thus, some pressure group have more power than others (e.g. economics groups being commonly seen as more powerful than others, especially business groups). Elitism induces a democratic society because while governments are selective bodies with their own agendas rather than neutral arbiters, they must listen to everyone, regardless of their power and status, as they have been voted into power (something that they should recognise). That being said, the unequal distribution of power posited by the theory of elitism implies that there may be issues for the body politic.