Democracy

democraticdemocraciesdemocraticallydemocratic governmentdemocratic processdemocratic societydemocratic systemdemocratic theorydemocratdemocratic election
Democracy ( dēmokratía, literally "Rule by 'People'") is a system of government where the citizens exercise power by voting.wikipedia
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Direct democracy

direct democraticdirect legislationdirect
In a direct democracy, the citizens as a whole form a governing body and vote directly on each issue.
Direct democracy or pure democracy is a form of democracy in which people decide on policy initiatives directly.

Roman Republic

RomanRepublicRomans
Western democracy, as distinct from that which existed in pre-modern societies, is generally considered to have originated in city-states such as Classical Athens and the Roman Republic, where various schemes and degrees of enfranchisement of the free male population were observed before the form disappeared in the West at the beginning of late antiquity.
Whilst there were elections each year, the Republic was not a democracy, but an oligarchy, as a small number of large families (called gentes) monopolised the main magistracies.

Western world

WesternWestthe West
Western democracy, as distinct from that which existed in pre-modern societies, is generally considered to have originated in city-states such as Classical Athens and the Roman Republic, where various schemes and degrees of enfranchisement of the free male population were observed before the form disappeared in the West at the beginning of late antiquity.
Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome are generally considered to be the birthplaces of Western civilization (with Greece having influenced the development of Rome): the former due to its impact on philosophy, democracy, science and art, building designs and proportions, architecture; the latter due to its influence on law, warfare, governance, republicanism, engineering and religion.

Dictatorship

dictatorialdictatorshipsdictator
Karl Popper defined democracy in contrast to dictatorship or tyranny, thus focusing on opportunities for the people to control their leaders and to oust them without the need for a revolution.
According to other definitions, democracies are regimes in which "those who govern are selected through contested elections"; therefore dictatorships are "not democracies".

Pluralism (political philosophy)

pluralismpolitical pluralismpluralistic
The term "democracy" is sometimes used as shorthand for liberal democracy, which is a variant of representative democracy that may include elements such as political pluralism; equality before the law; the right to petition elected officials for redress of grievances; due process; civil liberties; human rights; and elements of civil society outside the government.
While not all political pluralists advocate for a pluralist democracy, this is most common as democracy is often viewed as the most fair and effective way to moderate between the discrete values.

Legislature

legislativelegislative branchlegislative power
These representatives meet to form a governing body, such as a legislature.
In a democracy, legislators are most commonly popularly elected, although indirect election and appointment by the executive are also used, particularly for bicameral legislatures featuring an upper chamber.

E-democracy

digital democracyelectronic democracyeDemocracy
In some countries, freedom of political expression, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and internet democracy are considered important to ensure that voters are well informed, enabling them to vote according to their own interests.
E-democracy (a combination of the words electronic and democracy), also known as digital democracy or Internet democracy, incorporates 21st-century information and communications technology to promote democracy.

Classical Athens

AthensAthenianAthenians
Western democracy, as distinct from that which existed in pre-modern societies, is generally considered to have originated in city-states such as Classical Athens and the Roman Republic, where various schemes and degrees of enfranchisement of the free male population were observed before the form disappeared in the West at the beginning of late antiquity. The term appeared in the 5th century BC to denote the political systems then existing in Greek city-states, notably Athens, to mean "rule of the people", in contrast to aristocracy (ἀριστοκρατία, aristokratía), meaning "rule of an elite".
It is widely referred to as the cradle of Western Civilization, and the birthplace of democracy, largely due to the impact of its cultural and political achievements during the 5th and 4th centuries BC on the rest of the then-known European continent.

Separation of powers

checks and balancesbranches of governmentdivision of powers
In the United States, separation of powers is often cited as a central attribute.
John Calvin (1509–1564) favoured a system of government that divided political power between democracy and aristocracy (mixed government).

Political freedom

freedomfreedomsfree
In some countries, freedom of political expression, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and internet democracy are considered important to ensure that voters are well informed, enabling them to vote according to their own interests. No consensus exists on how to define democracy, but legal equality, political freedom and rule of law have been identified as important characteristics.
Political freedom (also known as political autonomy or political agency) is a central concept in history and political thought and one of the most important features of democratic societies.

Athens

AthenianAtheniansAthens, Greece
The term "democracy" first appeared in ancient Greek political and philosophical thought in the city-state of Athens during classical antiquity.
A center for the arts, learning and philosophy, home of Plato's Academy and Aristotle's Lyceum, it is widely referred to as the cradle of Western civilization and the birthplace of democracy, largely because of its cultural and political impact on the European continent, and in particular the Romans.

Judicial independence

independent judiciaryindependence of the judiciaryindependent
In some countries, notably in the United Kingdom which originated the Westminster system, the dominant principle is that of parliamentary sovereignty, while maintaining judicial independence.
It serves as a foundation for the rule of law and democracy.

Constitution of India

constitutionIndian Constitutionconstitutional
In India, parliamentary sovereignty is subject to the Constitution of India which includes judicial review.
The constitution declares India a sovereign, socialist, secular, democratic republic, assuring its citizens justice, equality and liberty, and endeavours to promote fraternity.

Larry Diamond

Diamond, Larry
According to American political scientist Larry Diamond, democracy consists of four key elements: a political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections; the active participation of the people, as citizens, in politics and civic life; protection of the human rights of all citizens; a rule of law, in which the laws and procedures apply equally to all citizens.
He has published extensively in the fields of foreign policy, foreign aid, and democracy.

Sortition

drawing of lotslotdemarchy
Athenian democracy took the form of a direct democracy, and it had two distinguishing features: the random selection of ordinary citizens to fill the few existing government administrative and judicial offices, and a legislative assembly consisting of all Athenian citizens.
It also minimizes factionalism, since there would be no point making promises to win over key constituencies if one was to be chosen by lot, while elections, by contrast, foster it In ancient Athenian democracy, sortition was the traditional and primary method for appointing political officials, and its use was regarded as a principal characteristic of democracy.

Democratic republic

republican democracydemocratic republicanrepublic
However, the charter made Mali more similar to a constitutional monarchy than a democratic republic.
A democratic republic is a form of government operating on principles adopted from a republic and a democracy.

Oligarchy

oligarchicoligarchiesoligarch
Democracy contrasts with forms of government where power is either held by an individual, as in an absolute monarchy, or where power is held by a small number of individuals, as in an oligarchy.
This was already recognized by the Athenians in the fourth century BCE: After the restoration of democracy from oligarchical coups, they used the drawing of lots for selecting government officers to counteract that tendency toward oligarchy in government.

Classical antiquity

antiquityclassicalancient
The term "democracy" first appeared in ancient Greek political and philosophical thought in the city-state of Athens during classical antiquity.
The Archaic period followed the Greek Dark Ages, and saw significant advancements in political theory, and the rise of democracy, philosophy, theatre, poetry, as well as the revitalisation of the written language (which had been lost during the Dark Ages).

Aristocracy

aristocraticaristocrataristocrats
The term appeared in the 5th century BC to denote the political systems then existing in Greek city-states, notably Athens, to mean "rule of the people", in contrast to aristocracy (ἀριστοκρατία, aristokratía), meaning "rule of an elite".
In later times, aristocracy was usually seen as rule by a privileged group, the aristocratic class, and has since been contrasted with democracy.

Freedom of speech

free speechfreedom of expressionfree expression
In some countries, freedom of political expression, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and internet democracy are considered important to ensure that voters are well informed, enabling them to vote according to their own interests.
One of the most notable proponents of the link between freedom of speech and democracy is Alexander Meiklejohn.

Freedom of the press

press freedompressfreedom of press
In some countries, freedom of political expression, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and internet democracy are considered important to ensure that voters are well informed, enabling them to vote according to their own interests.
Overwhelmingly, these people live in countries where there is no system of democracy or where there are serious deficiencies in the democratic process.

Human rights

human righthuman rights violationshuman rights abuses
The term "democracy" is sometimes used as shorthand for liberal democracy, which is a variant of representative democracy that may include elements such as political pluralism; equality before the law; the right to petition elected officials for redress of grievances; due process; civil liberties; human rights; and elements of civil society outside the government. According to American political scientist Larry Diamond, democracy consists of four key elements: a political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections; the active participation of the people, as citizens, in politics and civic life; protection of the human rights of all citizens; a rule of law, in which the laws and procedures apply equally to all citizens.
Membership is open to all European states which seek European integration, accept the principle of the rule of law and are able and willing to guarantee democracy, fundamental human rights and freedoms.

Lucca

LucaLuccheseLucca, Italy
certain medieval Italian city-states such as Venice, Genoa, Florence, Pisa, Lucca, Amalfi, Siena and San Marino
Lucca managed, at first as a democracy, and after 1628 as an oligarchy, to maintain its independence alongside of Venice and Genoa, and painted the word Libertas on its banner until the French Revolution in 1789.

Revolutions of 1848

1848 Revolution1848 RevolutionsSpring of Nations
In 1848, several revolutions broke out in Europe as rulers were confronted with popular demands for liberal constitutions and more democratic government.
The revolutions were essentially democratic and liberal in nature, with the aim of removing the old monarchical structures and creating independent nation states.

Frostating

FrostaþingTinghaugen
the Frostating, Gulating, Eidsivating and Borgarting in Norway,
The first seeds of democratic evolution appeared in matters of law.