The indirectness of political representation: a blessing or a concern? A study of the conceptions of members of the Flemish regional parliament.

Full Title: 
'The indirectness of political representation: a blessing or a concern? A study of the conceptions of members of the Flemish regional parliament,' Parliamentary Affairs, 68(3), 616-637.
Abstract: 
This article situates itself within ongoing scholarly debates on the conditions of democratic representation. It, more precisely, posits traditional concerns for the ‘indirectness’ of political representation—that is the possibility for citizens’ alienation and exclusion from decision-making—against contemporary accounts that conceive of such ‘indirectness’ as quintessential to democracy; mobilising citizens’ judgement and, potentially, drawing them into the decision-making process and making it more inclusive. Juxtaposing these two theoretical accounts with the practice of representation, this article researches—based on 70 semi-structured interviews with members of the Flemish regional parliament—how representatives themselves conceive of representation and deal with its indirectness.
Authors: 
Publication year: 
2015
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