Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Political Science

First Advisor

Robert Hislope


Representative Democracy, Consociationalism, Direct Democracy, Majoritarian, Semi-Autonomous, Democracy, Minority Representation, Minority Participation, Democratic Decline, Populism


The rapidly changing dynamism of the 21st century has left democratic institutions in shambles as populists rise to power and, arguably, threaten to undermine the very fabric of the democratic way of life through increasingly exclusionary politics. The prominence of populist leaders and re-emergence of ethnonationalism demonstrates a shortcoming of many representative democracies, their elites’ ability to adequately represent the masses. In this paper, I will argue that recent trends in the decline of democracy can be partially attributed to a lack of democratic legitimacy that has been caused by a failure to intentionally account for demographic diversity in the elites-masses compromise that underpins representative democracies. Furthermore, I will argue that the majoritarian notion of representation is not sufficient to represent the demographic composition of multicultural democracies and suggest a mixed regime that provides for greater descriptive representation of minorities in national politics.



Rights Statement

In Copyright - Educational Use Permitted.