The Possibility of Self-Government

  title={The Possibility of Self-Government},
  author={Colin Bird},
  journal={American Political Science Review},
  pages={563 - 577}
  • Colin Bird
  • Published 1 September 2000
  • Economics
  • American Political Science Review
Many have suggested that the findings of social choice theory demonstrate that there can be no “will of the people.” This has subversive implications for our intuitive concept of self-government. I explore the relation between the notion of a “social will,” that of self-government, and the impossibility theorems of social choice theory. I conclude that although the concept of the social will is essential to that of self-government, the findings of social choice theory do not cast doubt upon the… 

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