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Review of Political Debate - Outline Example

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This paper describes different view on the essence of political debate and the philosophy behind it…
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Review of Political Debate
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Download file to see previous pages Dahl does not distinguish between the forms of power and postulates what can be called a pluralistic approach towards power that has been called “classical pluralism” (Dahl, 1957). Dahl ignores the agenda setting behaviour of Bacharach and Baratz and instead concentrates on the conflict aspect of a given situation to study the exercise of power. Further, Dahl does not differentiate between an individual’s perceived interest and real interests. For Dahl, both kinds of interests should be viewed in a conflict scenario where one person prevails over the other in the exercise of power. What he does not account for is the fact that the real interests of a person is what dictates the practice of power and hence they are the determinants of who wins a power duel.
Bacharach and Baratz view power as essentially being janus faced. At one end of the spectrum, power can be exercised in a limited decision making context and on the other hand, the exercise of power happens on a large scale. Bacharach and Baratz’s main conception of power is to move beyond the decision making aspects of power and instead focus on the nature of power as a means of perpetuating elite domination and protection of one’s turf. Hence, Bachrach and Baratz argue that dominant elite might give away some concessions to the minority elements as a means of mollifying and appeasing the minority. But, the essential hegemony of the dominant elite is unchallenged (Bachrach and Baratz, 1962).
Bachrach and Baratz view power within the context of agenda setting and move beyond the narrow process of decision making. For them, agenda setting is as much important as decision making and the latter must be placed within the context of the former.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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