Ed Miliband Fabian Essay

Ed Miliband Fabian Essay-23
Ralph Miliband was a leading voice challenging this prevailing consensus.

Ralph Miliband was a leading voice challenging this prevailing consensus.His book aimed to show not just that this assumption was mistaken, but also that the doctrine of pluralism was itself part of a set of ideas which acted as an ideology disguising the true nature of power in capitalist societies.

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He discusses these issues in two chapters of his book on ‘processes of legitimation’.

If this analysis of the state in capitalist society is true, the argument goes, why is it not more widely accepted by those classes in society who lose out from capitalist domination?

Norman Stockman, University of Aberdeen [pdf] Anyone interested in British political news will have found it difficult to avoid the recent furore over Labour Party Leader Ed Miliband’s father, Ralph Miliband.

It was sparked off by the article about him carried by the Daily Mail on 27 September.

This involved the assumption that politics in such societies was a relatively open competition between political parties competing for support among the electorate, a competition in which the general framework of representative democracy merely provided a neutral ‘level playing field’.

Political scientists and sociologists typically would conduct enquiries into factors that might influence this competition: how political parties were formed, how they attracted votes, what kind of people voted for which parties, and how other kinds of political forces such as pressure groups were involved in the electoral process and in the business of government.The central question of Miliband’s book can now be seen: what is the relationship between the economic power of the dominant capitalist class and the power of state institutions?His answer rests on analysis of the composition of the personnel of the state institutions.This book became a standard text in political sociology, the branch of sociology that examines politics in its social context.At the time when Miliband wrote the book, the prevailing view of politics in liberal democratic societies such as Britain and America was referred to as pluralist.This class is not completely closed: people born into working class families can, in a minority of cases, amass property by rising within existing corporations or establishing their own businesses.However, Miliband shows how processes of family inheritance mean that membership of the dominant class is largely hereditary.Secondly, ‘the state’: Miliband analyses the state as a set of interrelated institutions which together enable ‘state power’ to be exercised, namely the government, the administration, the military and the police, the judiciary, regional and local governments, and parliamentary assemblies.Undue emphasis on central government and the parties that compete to form the government disguises the full set of institutions in which state power lies. Wiley Online Library requires cookies for authentication and use of other site features; therefore, cookies must be enabled to browse the site.Detailed information on how Wiley uses cookies can be found in our Privacy Policy.

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