In this TMA I will examine and assess how political order is made mainly through the state. In order to create, maintain and repair political order, the state needs authority from its citizens to do so and this authority needs to be legitimate. ‘Legitimacy refers to a belief in the states rightness, its right to rule or the idea that its authority is proper.’ I will then explain how today, legitimacy is closely linked to democracy and it is through free and fair elections that the state receives legitimacy. The degree to which individuals legitimise the state is varied and individuals or groups of people can also engage critically with the state.
Creating political …show more content…
Democracy is something that is always under construction and a state can always become more or less democratic.
‘Democracy can be defined minimally, in terms of procedures such as competitive elections, and maximally, in terms of ideas of participation, deliberation and the direct involvement of citizens in government.’ - Maximalist approaches require forms of citizen participation beyond voting such as ‘…special forums for deliberation or elements of direct democracy such as policy referendums, and so on.
The degree to which people legitimise the state is varied and ‘individuals, and the communities they live in and belong to, experience the state differently depending on a range of variables, which could include not only territorial location but also nationality, age, gender, class, race, disability, religion and sexual orientation.’ An example of this is the historical case in Northern Ireland.
‘At the heart of Ireland is a divided population, that experiences the state in quite different ways.’ The majority of Northern Ireland regarded themselves as British and wanted Northern Ireland to remain part of the UK and the minority regarded themselves as Irish and Catholics. The nationalists and Republicans did not feel the state belonged to them and saw nothing legitimate of