The Democratic State

Edited by Roger Benjamin and Stephen L. Elkin

One outcome of the declining economic growth and rising political conflict of the 1980s has been a renewed interest in political theory and increased questioning about the durability of the capitalist state. More and more political scientists are critically assessing the prevailing pluralist vision of the relationships between the state and the economy. Is the capitalist state able to adjust to crises and contradictions? What is the role of the state in changing—deteriorating—economic circumstances? How should we understand competing interpretations on the relative autonomy of the state, the nature of property rights, the legitimation crisis?

This collection of five original essays by seven of the best-known political-economy theorists addresses the interconnections between the economy and the polity and embodies the leading theoretical approaches to the political economy of the state.

“The volume (with index and extensive bibliography) is thought provoking.


“Belongs in all academic libraries.

—American Political Science Review

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About the Author

Roger Benjamin is Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Provost at the University of Pittsburgh and author The Limit of Politics: Collective Goods and Political Change in Postindustrial Societies.

Stephen L. Elkin is associate professor in the Department of Government and Politics at the University of Maryland and author of Politics and Land Use Planning.

Additional Titles in the Studies in Government and Public Policy Series