The Sociology of Political Representation and Deliberation

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Abstract

The language of democracy and citizenship is infused with a complicated idea: political representation. While political theorists have explored what representation and deliberation should be like, most research on how political discussion actually happens fails directly to address these theoretical standards. This article shows the importance of representation and deliberation to our contemporary ideas about democracy and citizenship. It shows that there is no clear line between deliberation and everyday conversation. Instead, everyday talk constitutes the foundation on top of which citizens build ideas about politics. These, in turn, are the bedrock of democratic representation.

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