How Authoritarian Rule Works
Modern China, Vol. 36, No. 1, pp. 79-86, January 2010
9 Pages Posted: 24 Dec 2009 Last revised: 11 Jan 2010
Date Written: November 1, 2009
Common features of the articles by Xueguang Zhou and Jiang Shigong include attention to governance rather than reform or regime change, to informal as well as formal rules, and to practice over texts. The articles differ mainly in their level of abstraction and the reach of their findings. But even here, Zhou’s "organizational practices" are essentially micro-level variants of the broader, constitutional principles that Jiang explores. Both authors make a persuasive case that there are abiding rules that pattern behavior between Chinese political elites, though what these rules are, and what distinguishes constitutional principles from other institutions (and temporary political compromises), await further study.
Keywords: implementation, cadre responsibility system, goal displacement, collusion, constitution, people’s congress, democratic centralism, Hong Kong Basic Law
JEL Classification: K10, K40, K42, L50, N45, O53, P39
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