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Separatism : Democracy and Disintegration - Metta Spencer


Democracy and Disintegration

By: Metta Spencer (Editor)

Paperback Published: 28th July 1998
ISBN: 9780847685851
Number Of Pages: 346

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As we approach the millennium the world is experiencing civil wars exclusively--half of which are being waged over the issue of secession. This book offers a comparative view of nine historic separatist movements, some of which have achieved the break-up of an empire or a state, and others that to date have not. Separatist struggles occur in waves that tend to coincide with upsurges of democratization. Several chapters explore this connection, making comparisons with economic and geopolitical causes. The authors analyze the long term effects of secession: after partition, ethnic strife typically continues for generations; minorities decline in status; and democracy and human rights are derogated. The break-up of one state often leads to further fragmentation, as in the disintegration of the Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian, and Russian empires, where years later separatism unfolded in the successor states of Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, Palestine, Chechnya and Tatarstan. The authors attribute much of today's separatism to the demagoguery of politicians losing legitimacy in post-communist states, for whom nationalism is a convenient populist ideology. A broader explanation, however, points to the failure of modern democracies to develop constitutional mechanisms reconciling the expression of particularistic identities with the universalism of citizenship. The book reviews proposals toward that end.

Industry Reviews

A powerful, practical demonstration of the unacceptably high human, social, economic, political, and military costs of separatism and partition through wars of secession. The book proposes political alternatives to promote democracy and protect minority rights through non-territorial electoral constituencies and weighted referendums. Valuable to scholars in many fields and highly recommended as a supplementary college reading, the book is also vital to anyone in the media and the public concerned with multicultural conflict and current international events.--Andre Gunder Frank, University of Toronto

Introductionp. 1
When States Dividep. 7
Separatism: Rationality and Ironyp. 43
The Economics of Secessionp. 69
The Collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empirep. 97
Citizenship and the Collapse of the State: The Ottoman Casep. 119
Who or What Broke Up the Soviet Union?p. 139
The Breakup of Yugoslaviap. 161
The Partition of Czechoslovakiap. 185
Chechen Separatismp. 205
Negotiating Autonomy: Tatarstan, Asymmetrical Federalism, and State Consolidation in Russiap. 227
The Tamil Secessionist Movement in Sri Lanka (Ceylon)p. 253
Quebec: A Unique Case of Secessionismp. 281
Conclusionp. 307
Select Bibliographyp. 319
Indexp. 331
About the Contributorsp. 337
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780847685851
ISBN-10: 0847685853
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 346
Published: 28th July 1998
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.76 x 14.94  x 2.08
Weight (kg): 0.47