Maurice Duverger
Overview
 
Maurice Duverger is a French jurist
Jurist
A jurist or jurisconsult is a professional who studies, develops, applies, or otherwise deals with the law. The term is widely used in American English, but in the United Kingdom and many Commonwealth countries it has only historical and specialist usage...

, sociologist and politician
Politician
A politician, political leader, or political figure is an individual who is involved in influencing public policy and decision making...

. He was born in Angoulême
Angoulême
-Main sights:In place of its ancient fortifications, Angoulême is encircled by boulevards above the old city walls, known as the Remparts, from which fine views may be obtained in all directions. Within the town the streets are often narrow. Apart from the cathedral and the hôtel de ville, the...

, Charente
Charente
Charente is a department in southwestern France, in the Poitou-Charentes region, named after the Charente River, the most important river in the department, and also the river beside which the department's two largest towns, Angoulême and Cognac, are sited.-History:Charente is one of the original...

.

Starting his career as a jurist at the University of Bordeaux
University of Bordeaux
University of Bordeaux is an association of higher education institutions in and around Bordeaux, France. Its current incarnation was established 21 March 2007. The group is the largest system of higher education schools in southwestern France. It is part of the Academy of Bordeaux.There are seven...

, Duverger became more and more involved in political science and in 1948 founded one of the first faculties for political science
Political science
Political Science is a social science discipline concerned with the study of the state, government and politics. Aristotle defined it as the study of the state. It deals extensively with the theory and practice of politics, and the analysis of political systems and political behavior...

 in Bordeaux, France. An emeritus
Emeritus
Emeritus is a post-positive adjective that is used to designate a retired professor, bishop, or other professional or as a title. The female equivalent emerita is also sometimes used.-History:...

 professor of the Sorbonne
Sorbonne
The Sorbonne is an edifice of the Latin Quarter, in Paris, France, which has been the historical house of the former University of Paris...

 and member of the FNSP, he has published many books and articles in newspapers, such as Corriere della Sera
Corriere della Sera
The Corriere della Sera is an Italian daily newspaper, published in Milan.It is among the oldest and most reputable Italian newspapers. Its main rivals are Rome's La Repubblica and Turin's La Stampa.- History :...

, la Repubblica
La Repubblica
la Repubblica is an Italian daily general-interest newspaper. Founded in 1976 in Rome by the journalist Eugenio Scalfari, as of 2008 is the second largest circulation newspaper, behind the Corriere della Sera.-Foundation:...

, El Pais, and especially Le Monde
Le Monde
Le Monde is a French daily evening newspaper owned by La Vie-Le Monde Group and edited in Paris. It is one of two French newspapers of record, and has generally been well respected since its first edition under founder Hubert Beuve-Méry on 19 December 1944...

.

Duverger has studied the evolution of political systems and the institutions that operate in diverse countries, showing a preference for empirical methods of investigation rather than philosophical reasoning.

He devised a theory which became known as Duverger's law
Duverger's law
In political science, Duverger's law is a principle which asserts that a plurality rule election system tends to favor a two-party system. This is one of two hypotheses proposed by Duverger, the second stating that “the double ballot majority system and proportional representation tend to...

, which identifies a correlation between a first-past-the-post election system and the formation of a two-party system
Two-party system
A two-party system is a system where two major political parties dominate voting in nearly all elections at every level of government and, as a result, all or nearly all elected offices are members of one of the two major parties...

.
While analysing the political system of France, he coined the term semi-presidential system
Semi-presidential system
The semi-presidential system is a system of government in which a president and a prime minister are both active participants in the day-to-day administration of the state...

.

From 1989 until 1994 he was a member of the Group of the Party of European Socialists
Group of the Party of European Socialists
The Group of the Party of European Socialists was a political group of the European Parliament. It was made up of MEPs elected from the lists of member parties of the Party of European Socialists....

 in the European Parliament.

In 1981 he was elected a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts
Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts
The Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts is the most prominent academic institution in Serbia today...

.
A member of Doriot
Doriot
Doriot is a French surname, and may refer to:* Georges Doriot , one of the first American venture capitalists.* Jacques Doriot , a French communist, later fascist...

’s fascist Parti Populaire Français
Parti Populaire Français
The Parti Populaire Français was a fascist political party led by Jacques Doriot before and during World War II...

 from age 20, Maurice Duverger completed his studies in from the Bordeaux
Bordeaux
Bordeaux is a port city on the Garonne River in the Gironde department in southwestern France.The Bordeaux-Arcachon-Libourne metropolitan area, has a population of 1,010,000 and constitutes the sixth-largest urban area in France. It is the capital of the Aquitaine region, as well as the prefecture...

 Department of Law in 1942, before lecturing in law at Poitiers
Poitiers
Poitiers is a city on the Clain river in west central France. It is a commune and the capital of the Vienne department and of the Poitou-Charentes region. The centre is picturesque and its streets are interesting for predominant remains of historical architecture, especially from the Romanesque...

 in 1942, and Bordeaux in 1943 (where he would, in 1948, found the Institut d’Études Politiques as its first director).
Encyclopedia
Maurice Duverger is a French jurist
Jurist
A jurist or jurisconsult is a professional who studies, develops, applies, or otherwise deals with the law. The term is widely used in American English, but in the United Kingdom and many Commonwealth countries it has only historical and specialist usage...

, sociologist and politician
Politician
A politician, political leader, or political figure is an individual who is involved in influencing public policy and decision making...

. He was born in Angoulême
Angoulême
-Main sights:In place of its ancient fortifications, Angoulême is encircled by boulevards above the old city walls, known as the Remparts, from which fine views may be obtained in all directions. Within the town the streets are often narrow. Apart from the cathedral and the hôtel de ville, the...

, Charente
Charente
Charente is a department in southwestern France, in the Poitou-Charentes region, named after the Charente River, the most important river in the department, and also the river beside which the department's two largest towns, Angoulême and Cognac, are sited.-History:Charente is one of the original...

.

Starting his career as a jurist at the University of Bordeaux
University of Bordeaux
University of Bordeaux is an association of higher education institutions in and around Bordeaux, France. Its current incarnation was established 21 March 2007. The group is the largest system of higher education schools in southwestern France. It is part of the Academy of Bordeaux.There are seven...

, Duverger became more and more involved in political science and in 1948 founded one of the first faculties for political science
Political science
Political Science is a social science discipline concerned with the study of the state, government and politics. Aristotle defined it as the study of the state. It deals extensively with the theory and practice of politics, and the analysis of political systems and political behavior...

 in Bordeaux, France. An emeritus
Emeritus
Emeritus is a post-positive adjective that is used to designate a retired professor, bishop, or other professional or as a title. The female equivalent emerita is also sometimes used.-History:...

 professor of the Sorbonne
Sorbonne
The Sorbonne is an edifice of the Latin Quarter, in Paris, France, which has been the historical house of the former University of Paris...

 and member of the FNSP, he has published many books and articles in newspapers, such as Corriere della Sera
Corriere della Sera
The Corriere della Sera is an Italian daily newspaper, published in Milan.It is among the oldest and most reputable Italian newspapers. Its main rivals are Rome's La Repubblica and Turin's La Stampa.- History :...

, la Repubblica
La Repubblica
la Repubblica is an Italian daily general-interest newspaper. Founded in 1976 in Rome by the journalist Eugenio Scalfari, as of 2008 is the second largest circulation newspaper, behind the Corriere della Sera.-Foundation:...

, El Pais, and especially Le Monde
Le Monde
Le Monde is a French daily evening newspaper owned by La Vie-Le Monde Group and edited in Paris. It is one of two French newspapers of record, and has generally been well respected since its first edition under founder Hubert Beuve-Méry on 19 December 1944...

.

Duverger has studied the evolution of political systems and the institutions that operate in diverse countries, showing a preference for empirical methods of investigation rather than philosophical reasoning.

He devised a theory which became known as Duverger's law
Duverger's law
In political science, Duverger's law is a principle which asserts that a plurality rule election system tends to favor a two-party system. This is one of two hypotheses proposed by Duverger, the second stating that “the double ballot majority system and proportional representation tend to...

, which identifies a correlation between a first-past-the-post election system and the formation of a two-party system
Two-party system
A two-party system is a system where two major political parties dominate voting in nearly all elections at every level of government and, as a result, all or nearly all elected offices are members of one of the two major parties...

.
While analysing the political system of France, he coined the term semi-presidential system
Semi-presidential system
The semi-presidential system is a system of government in which a president and a prime minister are both active participants in the day-to-day administration of the state...

.

From 1989 until 1994 he was a member of the Group of the Party of European Socialists
Group of the Party of European Socialists
The Group of the Party of European Socialists was a political group of the European Parliament. It was made up of MEPs elected from the lists of member parties of the Party of European Socialists....

 in the European Parliament.

In 1981 he was elected a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts
Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts
The Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts is the most prominent academic institution in Serbia today...

.

Career

A member of Doriot
Doriot
Doriot is a French surname, and may refer to:* Georges Doriot , one of the first American venture capitalists.* Jacques Doriot , a French communist, later fascist...

’s fascist Parti Populaire Français
Parti Populaire Français
The Parti Populaire Français was a fascist political party led by Jacques Doriot before and during World War II...

 from age 20, Maurice Duverger completed his studies in from the Bordeaux
Bordeaux
Bordeaux is a port city on the Garonne River in the Gironde department in southwestern France.The Bordeaux-Arcachon-Libourne metropolitan area, has a population of 1,010,000 and constitutes the sixth-largest urban area in France. It is the capital of the Aquitaine region, as well as the prefecture...

 Department of Law in 1942, before lecturing in law at Poitiers
Poitiers
Poitiers is a city on the Clain river in west central France. It is a commune and the capital of the Vienne department and of the Poitou-Charentes region. The centre is picturesque and its streets are interesting for predominant remains of historical architecture, especially from the Romanesque...

 in 1942, and Bordeaux in 1943 (where he would, in 1948, found the Institut d’Études Politiques as its first director). He also taught at Vichy France
Vichy France
Vichy France, Vichy Regime, or Vichy Government, are common terms used to describe the government of France that collaborated with the Axis powers from July 1940 to August 1944. This government succeeded the Third Republic and preceded the Provisional Government of the French Republic...

’s Institut d’Études Corporatives et Sociales.

In his first publication, "The Constitutions of France" (1944), he explained that the French constitution of 1940 created a "de facto government“. However, towards the end of the war, Duverger grew close to the Resistance, and in Libération analyzed the legitimacy of the new government of France and devoted himself to social-scientific theory.

After the War, he taught in the faculty of law and economic sciences in Paris, 1955 to 1985, and contributed to Libération
Libération
Libération is a French daily newspaper founded in Paris by Jean-Paul Sartre and Serge July in 1973 in the wake of the protest movements of May 1968. Originally a leftist newspaper, it has undergone a number of shifts during the 1980s and 1990s...

 and Le Monde
Le Monde
Le Monde is a French daily evening newspaper owned by La Vie-Le Monde Group and edited in Paris. It is one of two French newspapers of record, and has generally been well respected since its first edition under founder Hubert Beuve-Méry on 19 December 1944...

. From 1989 to 1994, he sat in the European Parliament
European Parliament
The European Parliament is the directly elected parliamentary institution of the European Union . Together with the Council of the European Union and the Commission, it exercises the legislative function of the EU and it has been described as one of the most powerful legislatures in the world...

 as an MEP for the Italian Communist Party
Italian Communist Party
The Italian Communist Party was a communist political party in Italy.The PCI was founded as Communist Party of Italy on 21 January 1921 in Livorno, by seceding from the Italian Socialist Party . Amadeo Bordiga and Antonio Gramsci led the split. Outlawed during the Fascist regime, the party played...

.

In 1946 he expanded his theses, with a special interest in the relation between electoral systems and party systems. This interest is at the heart of his most important publication: "The Political Parties" (1951). The work is one of the classics of party research, translated into several languages. That thesis led to Duverger's law, and later he coined the term "semi-presidentialism".

Political parties

Having as a point of reference their structure, Duverger in his book Les Partis Politiques (1951) distinguished parties between elite-based parties and mass-based parties.

Elite-based parties rather prefer the quality of their members over their quantity, their affiliates being people of great influence
Social influence
Social influence occurs when an individual's thoughts, feelings or actions are affected by other people. Social influence takes many forms and can be seen in conformity, socialization, peer pressure, obedience, leadership, persuasion, sales, and marketing...

 on local or national scale. They have flexible and disorganized structures, in general are weakly disciplined and lack developed pragmatic content, allowing each of their members to benefit from an enormous freedom of action. Their funding is generally provided by a sponsor, and as their strength comes from their elected representatives, they are typical parties of parliamentarian creation, which depend on the reputation and support of their benefactors.

Mass-based parties possess a secure organization and a strong structure arranged as a pyramid
Pyramid
A pyramid is a structure whose outer surfaces are triangular and converge at a single point. The base of a pyramid can be trilateral, quadrilateral, or any polygon shape, meaning that a pyramid has at least three triangular surfaces...

, with superposed hierarchically-arranged levels. Their members identify themselves more with the party’s ideology
Ideology
An ideology is a set of ideas that constitutes one's goals, expectations, and actions. An ideology can be thought of as a comprehensive vision, as a way of looking at things , as in common sense and several philosophical tendencies , or a set of ideas proposed by the dominant class of a society to...

 than with its leader, so they have an abstract adhesion. Their decisions are based on the participation of each one of its members, and its founding is granted by their members' payments, a situation that leads them to gain as many adherents as possible.

These parties tend to develop on a par with suffrage
Suffrage
Suffrage, political franchise, or simply the franchise, distinct from mere voting rights, is the civil right to vote gained through the democratic process...

 and democracy
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

. For instance, elite-based parties execute an often sporadic political labor, focused on elections. However, the disadvantage this implies in relation to their contestant parties (which denote permanent labor and a disciplined and organic structure), impels them to modify their organization to become mass-based parties.

Works

  • Les partis politiques (1951)
  • La participation des femmes à la vie politique (1955)
  • Les finances publiques (1956)
  • Méthodes de la science politique (1959)
  • De la dictature (1961)
  • Méthodes des Sciences sociales (1961)
  • Introduction à la politique (1964)
  • Sociologie politique (1966)
  • La démocratie sans les peuples (1967)
  • Institutions politiques et Droit constitutionnel (1970)
  • Janus: les deux faces de l'Occident (1972)
  • Sociologie de la politique (1973)
  • L'autre côté des choses (1977)
  • King's Mate (1978)
  • Les orangers du lac Balaton (1980)
  • Factors in a Two-Party and Multiparty System, in Party Politics and Pressure Groups (New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1972), pp. 23–32.
  • Political Parties: Their Organization and Activity in the Modern State
  • The Study of Politics ISBN 0-690-79021-X
  • La République des Citoyens (1982) ISBN 2-85956-311-3
  • Lettre Ouverte aux Socialistes (Collection Lettre ouverte) ISBN 2-226-00326-6
  • Modern Democracies: Economic Power Versus Political Power ISBN 0-03-077280-X
  • La Cohabitation des Français ISBN 2-13-041498-2
  • Europe des Hommes: Une Métamorphose Inachevée (1994) ISBN 2-7381-0262-X
  • The Idea of Politics: the Uses of Power in Society
  • The French Political System
  • L'Europe dans tous ses Etats (1995)

External links

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