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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law [MPECCoL]

Popular Sovereignty

Anthony Murphy

From: Oxford Constitutions (http://oxcon.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 30 May 2023

Comparative constitutional law — Representative democracy — Republic — Civil and political rights — Delegated powers — State sovereignty and states' rights

General Editors: Rainer Grote, Frauke Lachenmann, Rüdiger Wolfrum
Managing Editor: Martina Mantovani

1 Popular sovereignty is a doctrine postulating that government derives its power from those it governs. Most definitions concur in conceptualizing ‘the people’ as a collective entity vested with the final decision in a certain political setting (see Ochoa Espejo). In its broadest sense a common denominator for the democratic theories of sovereignty, popular sovereignty stands in antithesis to the theocratic doctrines under which the source of sovereign power is supernatural, understood as a divine right of absolute monarchs (absolutism). Under its narrower...
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