Rule and representation: conceptual continuity and change

GT 1.8 El gobierno de nuestras vidas en el siglo XXI

Sesión 1
Día: jueves,19 de septiembre de 2013
Hora: 11:45 a 14:15
Lugar: E10SEM03

The relationship between citizen, political order and modern democracy is frequently depicted as a bond defined by some kind of representation. In contemporary political science representation is frequently defined in terms of institutions and designation. But the representative political bond cannot be reduced to its institutional or constitutional meaning, since – as Eric Voegelin points out – its existential meaning is constantly present. It is important to recall that representation has been a political notion for a much longer time than it has been part of modern institutional practice and theory. Historically, conceptions of political representation have existed for long periods of time in polities without clear-cut citizenry, demoi, or dominions, such as empires, composite monarchies, medieval cities and neighbourhoods, all of which are examples of the exercise of multi-layered and overlapping rule and authority. This paper delves into a series of conceptions of representation and rule in medieval and early modern political thought that precede sovereign statehood, not in order to write history as confined to the past but to study conceptual continuity and change that determine central notions of contemporary democracy.

Palabras clave: representation, rule, statehood, empire, democracy