Representation and Consent: Why They Arose in Europe and Not Elsewhere

@article{Stasavage2016RepresentationAC,
  title={Representation and Consent: Why They Arose in Europe and Not Elsewhere},
  author={David Stasavage},
  journal={Annual Review of Political Science},
  year={2016},
  volume={19},
  pages={145-162}
}
  • D. Stasavage
  • Published 11 May 2016
  • History
  • Annual Review of Political Science
Medieval Western Europeans developed two practices that are the bedrock of modern democracy: representative government and the consent of the governed. Why did this happen in Europe and not elsewhere? I ask what the literature has to say about this question, focusing on the role of political ideas, on economic development, and on warfare. I consider Europe in comparison with the Byzantine Empire, the Abbasid Caliphate, and Song Dynasty China. I argue that ultimately Europe's different path may… 

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