HomeDLSU Dialogue: An Interdisciplinary Journal for Cultural Studiesvol. 13 no. 1 (1997)

Political Parties and the Developmental Process

Socorro Leyco-reyes



Authoritarian political regimes of most underdeveloped countries prohibit the organization of political parties on the bases of their susceptibility to corruption, tendency to foment social division and conflict, propensity to general political instability and vulnerability to external manipulation. The truth or falsehood of these charges can only be ascertained after an understanding of the conditions which give birth to political parties and their impact on the modernization process. Harold D. Lasswell and Abraham Kaplan argue that political parties “are groups formulating comprehensive issues and submitting candidates in election” (1950, pp. 169-171). While this definition excludes political parties primarily committed to the task of indoctrination and agitation such as the Communist Parties which are only peripherally concerned with parliamentary victory, it nevertheless reflects the basic condition of party emergence and growth.