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MIGUEL, Luis Felipe. A democracia domesticada: bases antidemocráticas do pensamento democrático contemporâneo. Dados [online]. 2002, vol.45, n.3, pp.483-511. ISSN 0011-5258.

Claiming that democratic regimes were basically procedural (or competitive) in character, Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy published in 1942 by Austrian economist Joseph Schumpeter, was a turning point in the theory of democracy. From then on, all major lines of the theory of democracy have been defined vis-à-vis the Schumpeterian conception, and many of the most influential ones fit his key premises. However, Schumpeter’s main conceptions of society and human nature have been inherited from a current of though that aimed at asserting the impossibility of any democratic organization: the so-called "theory of elites", materialized in the works of Vilfredo Pareto, Gaetano Mosca and Robert Michels. The article tries to demonstrate that this legacy jeopardizes the prevailing conceptions of democracy and even the practices of western-type electoral regimes.

Keywords : democracy; theory of elites; political inequality.

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