Participatory democracy calls for the creation and proliferation of practices and institutions that enable individuals and groups to better determine the conditions in which they act and relate to others. Michael Menser
’s timely book We Decide!: Theories and Cases in Participatory Democracy
(Temple University Press, 2018) is a comprehensive treatment of participatory democracy, in which he delves into the history of democracy and offers an optimistic vision of the future of democratic participation in various forms and at different scales. Menser also outlines “maximal democracy,” his own view of participatory democracy which expands people’s abilities to shape their own lives, reduce inequality, and promote solidarity. We Decide!
draws on liberal, feminist, anarchist, and environmental justice philosophies as well as in-depth case studies of Spanish factory workers, Japanese housewives, and Brazilian socialists to demonstrate that participatory democracy actually works!