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An Elite Analysis: Reimagining LDP’s Factions, 1955-1993

Author: Yalin Akçevin

Source: Global Perspectives on Japan (GPJ), No.6 (2023), pp.100-121
Publisher: Forum Tauri Press
Keywords: Elite theory, Weberian theory, Liberal Democratic Party of Japan, factions, elite organizations


The factions of the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan have been studied from cultural and functional-structural viewpoints, and have been characterized as being integral to both the functioning and breakdown of the Japanese political system and the LDP.

This study seeks to expand the discussion on the factions by moving beyond both these existing viewpoints by using elite and Weberian theory, as well as through a reconstruction of available data and discourse on the subject. The aim here is to reexamine the functions of the factions and their political significance, seeking to reconceptualize them as politically engaged elite organizations. The findings indicate that the factions of the LDP are competing elite organizations with discernible policy involvements and differentiations, both from a theoretical and evidential perspective.