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Democratization in the Third Wave European Countries - Essay Example

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The third wave countries in some cases failed to consolidate democracy. Others, such as Spain and Greece, succeeded. Some of the factors that made Spain and Greece a success are that both experienced economic growth and were high income countries and the elites were in favor of the transition…
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Democratization in the Third Wave European Countries
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Democratization in the Third Wave European Countries

Download file to see previous pages... There have been three waves of democratization. The first wave started in the 1820’s, as suffrage widened and more citizens in Europe demanded their rights (Huntington 1991, p.3). It started in the US and then spread across the British dominion (Huntington 1984, p.196). However, in 1922 Mussolini came to power, which marked the return to autocracies. By the end of World War II, only 12 democracies were left, in comparison to 29 beforehand (Huntington 1991, p.3).
The second wave was supported, and imposed by the Allied Forces after World War II. In 1962, the zenith was reached with 36 democracies (Huntington 1991, p.3). Many of them were also former colonies (Huntington 1991, p. 31 – 108). After 1962, democracy again experienced a decline (Jaggers & Gurr 1995, 477).
In 1974, the third wave started. This wave was marked by the shifts to democracy in Portugal, Greece and Spain (Huntington, 1991, p.4). The Catholic Church became an opponent of autocracies in the 1960’s (Huntington 1991, p.77). The European Union (EU), then known as the European Community (EC), conditioned the benefits of access to their markets on democratization. Greece joined EC in 1981, and Spain and Portugal followed. By 1994, according to Jaggers and Gurr (1995, p.479), there were 50 percent democracies and only 18 percent autocracies in the world. However, they also classified countries into incoherent systems, claiming that 19 percent countries were autocracies and 13 percent democracies (Jaggers & Gurr, 1995, p.479)....
31 – 108). After 1962, democracy again experienced a decline (Jaggers & Gurr 1995, 477). In 1974, the third wave started. This wave was marked by the shifts to democracy in Portugal, Greece and Spain (Huntington, 1991, p.4). The Catholic Church became an opponent of autocracies in the 1960’s (Huntington 1991, p.77). The European Union (EU), then known as the European Community (EC), conditioned the benefits of access to their markets on democratization. Greece joined EC in 1981, and Spain and Portugal followed. By 1994, according to Jaggers and Gurr (1995, p.479), there were 50 percent democracies and only 18 percent autocracies in the world. However, they also classified countries into incoherent systems, claiming that 19 percent countries were autocracies and 13 percent democracies (Jaggers & Gurr, 1995, p.479). These are less stable than coherent systems. Papaioannou and Siourounis (2008, p.384) determined that among 174 countries between 1960 and 2005, there were 63 democratic transitions and 3 reverse transitions from relatively stable democracy to autocracy. In the 1990’s, it was questionable whether young democracies were going to survive. According to Shin (1994, p.137), since governments depend on people or demos, democracy can only survive if people support it. However, at the time, newly democratic countries lacked factors that facilitate democratization such as civic organizations and market economies (Shin 1994, p.137). According to Rose and Shin (2001, p.334), “[w]hile the third wave has increased by 77 per cent the number of countries holding competitive elections, the number of countries recognizing political and civil liberties has increased by only 40 per cent.” As a result, the third wave in many ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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