Gorbachev's reinterpretation of socialist democracy : socialist liberal democracy or democracy by decree?


Egian, Hasmik




The Gorbachev leadership's aspirations for the complete restructuring of the Soviet Union (Perestroika), rested upon the twin-pillars of economic reforms and demokratizatsiia - the democratisation of the country's economic, political and social life. Gorbachevian democratisation was the reinterpretation of socialist democracy that was based on the notion that there is an alternative to capitalism and liberal democracy. This alternative was presented as socialist democracy that purported to be more "humane and democratic." It combined liberal democratic constitutionalism and proceduralism with Leninist socialist democracy, thereby building a hybrid model of democracy that in theory could be described as socialist liberal. However, this model remained firmly rooted in Leninist practices and traditions. A theory of democracy that was constructed on mutually opposing concepts could only result in a practice of democracy that embodied elements of both - liberalism and authoritarianism.


Gorbachev, Mikhail Sergeevich, 1931-




Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 

Thesis Degree Level: 


Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Soviet and East European Studies

Parent Collection: 

Theses and Dissertations

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