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5 Comp. Pol. Stud. 3 (1972-1973)

handle is hein.journals/compls5 and id is 1 raw text is: 










                                 CONSOCIATIONAL

                                          DEMOCRACY

                   AND LANGUAGE CONFLICT

                A  Comparison of the Belgian and

                                        Swiss Experiences


                                             JAMES A. DUNN, Jr.
                              University of Missouri  (Kansas  City)



M odern politics is   intimately linked to the politics of party systems.
       Ever since political parties made their appearance in the nineteenth
 century, most of the significant mass political activity in Western countries
 has been aimed at influencing the party system in some way: getting into
 it, getting control of it, maintaining it, overthrowing it, or replacing it. It is
 not surprising, therefore, that the modern study of party systems has been
 intimately linked to the study of democratic political stability and conflict
 resolution. The range qf  the recent literature on party systems  is
 extraordinarily wide. It includes the historical model-building effort of
 Lipset and  Rokkan   (1967), and  Dahl's  (1966) broad  comparative
 generalizations about oppositions. It encompasses the  cross-national
 studies of Rose and Urwin (1970, 1969) and Blondel (1968), as well as the
 theoretical case study of Harry  Eckstein (1966). Of even  greater
 interest, in the context of this article, is the growing body of literature
 which examines the relations between party systems, social cleavages, elite
 behavior, and political stability in a particular type of political system

 AUTHOR'S  NOTE:  An earlier version of this paper was presented at the Annual
 Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association in Chicago, April 29-May 1,
 1971. My thanks to Arthur E. Curtis, Benjamin R. Barber, Val R. Lorwin and Arend
 Lijphart for reading the earlier draft and making many helpful comments and
 corrections.


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