Présentation
 
1997 - Volume 38 > Numéro 2

ISSN 0035-2969

The « voting paradox » and the rationality theory
Raymond BOUDON

pp. 217-227

 

The debate on the « voting paradox » can only be understood if it is applied to a much wider issue : that of the rationality of social actors and, thus rationality itself. The notion of rationality coming from the neo-classic economic theory can be used to analyse certain social phenomena. For other subjects it is a lot more difficult. Such is the case with voting. Several brilliant theories attempt to avoid the difficulties but not in a very satisfactory manner. « Irrational » voting theories are, also under severe criticism. An acceptable solution for the voting paradox can only be obtained by revising the « utilitarist » idea of rationality by putting forward the classical notion of « axiological rationality » and by precising the meaning of this notion. This revision applies not only to the voting phenomenon but to a large number of other categories of social phenomena.

 

 

 
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