In Principle and in Practice: Learning Political Tolerance in Eastern and Western Europe

In Principle and in Practice: Learning Political Tolerance in Eastern and Western Europe Political tolerance is a key democratic value believed to undergird successful and healthy democracies. In nascent democracies especially, citizens must tolerate the views and participation of opposing groups in order to ensure methodical transfers of power with successive elections. Yet, despite its importance, little research considers tolerance outside established democracies. In this paper, we compare political tolerance across eight Eastern European countries and six Western countries. We demonstrate that mean levels of tolerance are lower in the newly democratized countries of Eastern Europe and then examine whether they are a function of East Europeans’ limited experience with democracy. We also test whether established individual-level theories of tolerance replicate across this wide range of new and old democracies. We find some support for theories of democratic learning and also show that models of tolerance operate differently across the range of countries in our sample. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Political Behavior Springer Journals

In Principle and in Practice: Learning Political Tolerance in Eastern and Western Europe

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers-Plenum Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Political Science and International Relations; Political Science; Sociology, general
ISSN
0190-9320
eISSN
1573-6687
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11109-006-9017-2
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Political tolerance is a key democratic value believed to undergird successful and healthy democracies. In nascent democracies especially, citizens must tolerate the views and participation of opposing groups in order to ensure methodical transfers of power with successive elections. Yet, despite its importance, little research considers tolerance outside established democracies. In this paper, we compare political tolerance across eight Eastern European countries and six Western countries. We demonstrate that mean levels of tolerance are lower in the newly democratized countries of Eastern Europe and then examine whether they are a function of East Europeans’ limited experience with democracy. We also test whether established individual-level theories of tolerance replicate across this wide range of new and old democracies. We find some support for theories of democratic learning and also show that models of tolerance operate differently across the range of countries in our sample.

Journal

Political BehaviorSpringer Journals

Published: Nov 22, 2006

References

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