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The Masks of the Political God by Luca Ozzano

Developing Typology of Representative Claims

Civil Society
Brigitte Geißel
Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität Frankfurt
Petra Guasti
Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität Frankfurt
Brigitte Geißel
Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität Frankfurt

The re-energized study of representation under the umbrella of the ‘representative turn' shifts the focus from institutional elements (elections) to representation as the semantics and the processes of claim-making (Saward 2010, 2016, Disch 2015). Although the literature on representative claims has been proliferating, several gaps remain, the lack of conceptual clarity, systematic empirical research, and a framework structuring the cacophony of representative claims (typology). This paper seeks to close these gaps. We shift the focus from the type of claim maker (elected or self-selected) to what is claimed to be represented (claimed constituency) and to the constructed (claimed) linkage between the constituency (in Saward’s terms object) and the representative (Saward’s subject). We propose a general typology of representative claims, which conceptually structures the cacophony of (new) representative claims, can be applied in very different contexts and allows comparing various types of claims. We provide adjustments to Saward's theory enabling the application of his abstract theoretical concepts to the empirical research of real-world politics.
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