Theories of participatory democracy and the Kibbutz

Menachem Rosner, Joseph R. Blasi

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter examines changes in the implementation of kibbutz democracy in light of the theoretical controversy between the realistic-empirical approach to democracy and the more recently developed participatory-democratic theories of self-management. Both the realistic-empirical theories of democracy and the participatory-democratic theories developed as a reaction to the gap between the reality of the Western parliamentary democracies and the normative models of classical democratic theories developed by Rousseau and John Stuart Mill. The Marxist conception of participatory capitalism is especially relevant for the kibbutz, which was deeply influenced by socialist tradition and aspirations. Originally, the kibbutz model of democracy was quite close to the ideal type of participatory democracy. Nevertheless, there are signs that the kibbutz is in transition toward indirect democracy as a result of complex social changes. Some features of the elitist-realistic model, or in Mansbridge's terms the adversary-democratic model, are emerging in the kibbutz.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComparative Social Dynamics
Subtitle of host publicationEssays in Honor of S. N. Eisenstadt
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9780429705502
ISBN (Print)9780367014896
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences(all)


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