Linking parties with people?: party membership in Sweden, 1960-1997

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Ashgate, 1999 - History - 310 pages
The main function of political parties is to provide political linkage between citizens and the state. The parties can fulfill this function by being open membership organisations. The book examines whether there has been a decline in the participatory and representative linkage provided by Swedish parties between 1960 and 1994. The status and influence of party members is analysed through an ambitious study of party documents. The long term development of membership and activity is studied in detail using new methodological and conceptual tools. The findings regarding the development of the members' social and ideological representativeness are based on a creative secondary analysis of survey data. There is evidence of a participatory linkage among the Swedish parties. There are also warning signs with respect to representative linkage but no general decline.

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Parties and Political Linkage
Development of Membership Strength
Development of Membership Activity

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