Rationalising localism and brokerage: The deputy's role in Irish democracy

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  • Isabel Kusche
This article focuses on the role of parliamentary deputies in Ireland. Their heavy engagement in brokerage activities for individual constituents at the expense of legislative work and policy discussion is often seen as a specificity of Irish politics and criticised by many Irish observers. The article employs the notion of global scripts and the concept of domestication of global trends in order to analyse how the question of the appropriate relationship between deputies and voters is informed both by a general trend towards the professionalisation of politicians and a domestic tradition of democratic representation that emphasises localism. A qualitative analysis of records of Irish parliamentary debates and newspaper articles reconstructs the long-term public debate about the deputy’s role. The analysis demonstrates the relevance of global scripts on the one hand and the importance of the domestic setting on the other. In this way the article contributes to a better understanding of the entanglement of the global and the local.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Journal of Cultural and Political Sociology
Pages (from-to)52-75
Number of pages24
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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