David Arter
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The emergence of the Scandinavian party system(s)
in Scandinavian politics today
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Seymour Lipset and Stein Rokkan analyse in a developmental perspective the nature and evolution of the cleavage structure underpinning the emergence by about 1930 of the basic West European party systems. Lipset and Rokkan viewed the main conflict lines, molding the party systems of Western Europe as the increment of four historic revolutions: religious revolution, national revolution, industrial revolution, and proletarian revolution. This chapter opens with a brief presentation of the Lipset and Rokkan framework. It explores how relevant their model of the building of party systems in Europe is to the Scandinavian experience. The chapter examines how useful it is to understand the structuring of the modern party families and the configuration of the party systems that had evolved in the Nordic region by the end of the 1920s. It presents the basic features of the Scandinavian party system model with Sweden as the prototype.

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