The Prehistory and Meaning of Civil Society and its Role in Political Life in Different Countries
Authors: Sopio GABELAIA
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The democratic system of governance reform is one of the main directions of the establishment
and development of the civil society. Civil society is any activity, any initiative of
individuals, spontaneously created self-governance and citizens based associations and
organizations, which are supported and protected by the law of the state in their work.
Tocqueville first presented civil society to the West as voluntary, non-political social organizations
that strengthen democracy preventing a tyranny of the majority. Associations,
which can be “religious, moral, serious, futile, general or restricted, enormous or
diminutive”, protect diversity by uniting equal but weak individuals into powerful groups.
These associations prevent the fragmentation of society by forcing men to consider the
affairs of others and to work with their neighbors. In different epoch and in different situations
the term “civil society” may be understood in different ways, it may be freedom of
speech, wide field of opportunities, democracy, unity of some interests, communication,
globalization, activity, governmental and non-governmental associations. In order to get
effective functioning of the mechanism, the main thing is to inform society and earn good
reputation and trust. All citizens should be acknowledged with the main point of civil society,
their functions, duties, obligations and when they can apply to them and what kind
of problems they are concerned with. Most important, is more communication, and civil
society itself should be interested in providing them with more information about their job,
aims, plans and do their best to make citizens get involved in any business or activities.
This communication should be bilateral, active and effective. The purpose of the paper is
to discuss what kind of prehistory civil society had and how great its role is in the development
processes of democratic governance.