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date: 06 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Focusing explicitly on the dynamics of electoral representation, this chapter shows that scholarship about representation has been lively despite remaining at the fringe of mainstream international developments. Some precursors, such as Duverger, have failed to shape French debates about the issue even if their international standing has been immense. Instead, attention has been paid to the symbolic and historical dimensions of representation. The idea that representation has to be looked at outside the electoral arena has been particularly widespread. This chapter shows however that documentation about the various dimensions of representation in France is extensive. It also claims that some features of its institutions, starting with its various specific electoral systems, can provide unique opportunities to find quasi-experimental evidence about key issues affecting electoral representation.

Keywords: representation, parliamentary democracy, trust in government, disproportionality, abstention, accountability, responsiveness, France

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