The Ethnic Entanglement: Conflict and Intervention in World Politics

The Ethnic Entanglement: Conflict and Intervention in World Politics

The Ethnic Entanglement: Conflict and Intervention in World Politics

The Ethnic Entanglement: Conflict and Intervention in World Politics


The ongoing reconstruction of world politics following the collapse of Soviet and Eastern European variants of communism have seemingly unleashed the power of ethnicity with a vengeance. Stack, Hebron, and their contributors explore the concept of ethnicty in international relations, seeking to address this most destabilizing, yet ubiquitous dimension of the emerging new world order.


Lui Hebron and John F. Stack, Jr.

From Francophone Quebec to Casamance in Senegal and from Mindanao in the Philippines to Derry in Northern Ireland a seemingly new wave of ethnic nationalism is sweeping across the globe. That the intensification of ethnic-based conflict occurs not only in Asian and African states but also in Western Europe and North America, regions generally considered to have "triumphed over" ethnic differences, would indicate that the existence of the problem is not confined to any area (Horowitz, 1994: 175-178). Indeed, the pervasiveness of ethnicity and ethnonationalism is now a central issue which all states must increasingly confront in this newly evolving world order. the ramifications of ethnic-based conflict have the potential for escalating into international crises that may well define the post-Cold War international system. That the dominant paradigms of international relations and comparative politics continue to discount the power of ethnicity is one of the central concerns of this book.

The resurgence of ethnic consciousness and the growing scholarly interest in ethnicity appear to be due to several factors. First and foremost is the increased concern over the loss of legitimacy of the state in international politics. the legitimacy of national regimes is undergoing progressive diminution due to the ability of ethnic groups to generate not only participation and solidarity but also passion and instability. the result renders many governments less effective in processing ethnic-based demands. the ineffectiveness of governments fosters, in turn, increased movements toward greater ethnonational and ethnic-based differentiation (subgroupism) (Rosenau, 1989: 22-23).

Confidence and receptiveness about regime legitimacy have long been acknowledged as a critical factor in domestic and international system authority. the resulting strains between and within national systems may, in a number of ways, have engendered a global crisis of authority in world politics that imperils . . .

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