WP82: Democracy without people: Political institutions and citizenship in the New South Africa

Welcome to the Afrobarometer publications section. For short, topical analyses, try our briefing papers (for survey rounds 1-5) and dispatches (starting with Round 6). For longer, more technical analyses of policy issues, check our policy papers. Our working papers are full-length analytical pieces developed for publication in academic journals or books. You can also search the entire publications database by keyword(s), language, country, and/or author.

Can't find a document?

As we work to upgrade our website, occasional technical issues may cause some links to break and some documents to be temporarily unavailable. If you're unable to find a specific document, please email [email protected]

Filter content by:

Working papers
Mattes, Robert

South Africa is widely seen as a leading, if not paradigmatic, success story of the Third Wave of Democracy. This success is just as widely attributed to the country’s supposedly wise choice of new democratic institutions that averted ethnic civil war and induced all key contenders to buy into the new democratic dispensation. But while there has been a real secular increase in public perceptions that its new institutions are indeed supplying a high level of democracy, there is little if any evidence that these institutional successes have resulted in increased levels of public demand for democracy. Nor is there much evidence of any institutional impacts on the attitudes of specific sub-groups that might be expected by institutional theories of democratization. The paper closes by suggesting three possible reasons for these developments that should be pursued in a final version of this paper.