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Book Launch: Wrestling with Democracy by Dennis Pilon

Monday, May 20, 2013 - 7:30pm - 9:30pm


The Tranzac Club, Main Hall
292 Brunswick Street
Toronto, ON
43° 39' 55.0152" N, 79° 24' 26.5104" W

University of Toronto Press Publishing presents the Toronto release for Dennis Pilon's latest book 'Wrestling with Democracy: Voting Systems as Politics in the 20th Century West'.

Though sharing broadly similar processes of economic and political development from the mid-to-late nineteenth century onward, western countries have diverged greatly in their choice of voting systems: most of Europe shifted to proportional voting around the First World War, while Anglo-American countries have stuck with relative majority or majority voting rules. Using a comparative historical approach, Wrestling with Democracy examines why voting systems have (or have not) changed in western industrialized countries over the past century.

Excerpt: Historical reformers: Why and how democratic institutions change

Wrestling with Democracy: Voting Systems as Politics in the 20th Century West

by Dennis Pilon
(University of Toronto Press Publishing,

The following is an excerpt from the new book Wrestling with Democracy: Voting Systems as Politics in the 20th Century West, which examines why voting systems have or have not changed in western industrialized countries over the past century.


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Seats in the House of Commons. Photo: Reza Vaziri/Flickr

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