Proceedings of the 48th International Academic Conference, Copenhagen

DEMOCRACY AND INEQUALITY: THE CASE OF MEXICO

GABRIELA PALAVICINI

Abstract:

Democracy and inequality: The case of Mexico It might seem contradictory to talk about democracy and inequality. We cannot forget that one of the principles defining a democratic regime is equality. Nevertheless, history shows that in many democratic States, at least in their definition, inequality remains a challenge and at the same time and in consequence, to keep democracy or consolidate it are challenges too. This paper would try to respond to this research question: how inequalities impact the quality of democracy in the Mexican case?. We choose that country because it has been considered, theoretically speaking, a democratic regime since 1917, and a young democratic regime in its practice since 2000, but the quality of its practice remains poor without being able to talk about its consolidation in terms of Schmitter. Another characteristic of that country is its economic, social, and political gaps among citizens. How can democracy remain in a country where people are living with food, housing, and educational shortcomings? Has democracy allowed those inequalities? What has been the price that democracy has paid for keeping those inequalities? Are those inequalities that allow the political regime to be in place? These are some of the questions to be answered. Our work hypothesis is that the social and economic inequalities have damaged the quality of democracy. They delay its consolidation, with consequences reflected in poor citizenship participation in State’s affairs, since it presents difficulties to improve active citizenship, because of the conditions of some people, making them unable to be considered as agents in their State and the decisions-making process. We would also consider how identity, inclusion and recognition are taking place in Mexico and how could those elements take place to improve democracy, increase social cohesion and reduce insecurity, illegal practices and violations to human rights.

Keywords: inequality, democracy, exclusión, citizenship

DOI: 10.20472/IAC.2019.048.043

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