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This book examines the dynamics of the American party system and explores how contemporary American politics was formed. Specifically, it asks how the Democrats could become sufficiently competitive in the American North as to be able to construct a national political majority. It rejects the conventional account, based on 'realignment theory', that between the end of Reconstruction and the Civil Rights Revolution, the base level of support for the Democratic party varied greatly from one era to another. Instead, by distinguishing between the 'building blocks' available to the Democrats in coalition formation and the aggregation of those 'blocks' into an actual coalition, the author shows that there was much less variation over time in the available 'blocks' than is usually argued. Neither the economic depression of 1893 nor the New Deal had the impact on the party system that most political scientists claim.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780521675000
ISBN-10: 0521675006
Format: Paperback
(228mm x 152mm x 17mm)
Pages: 300
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 13-Mar-2006
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Alan J. Ware

Alan Ware is a professor and tutor in Politics at Worcester College, Oxford University. He has authored seven previous books and edited six books. He has written numerous articles that have appeared in scholarly journals. His most recent book, The American Direct Primary, was published in 2002, and Political Parties and Party Systems was recently translated into Spanish. He serves on the Editorial Boards for Party Politics and Democratization.

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