Democratisation and the Prevention of Violent Conflict : Lessons Learned from Bulgaria and Macedonia book cover
1st Edition

Democratisation and the Prevention of Violent Conflict
Lessons Learned from Bulgaria and Macedonia

ISBN 9780754674344
Published December 28, 2008 by Routledge
192 Pages

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Book Description

Challenging the often held belief that democratization necessarily leads to aggressive ethnic nationalism and even violent conflict, this book offers an alternative account of democratization and inter-ethnic relations. It suggests that democratization can in fact help to prevent violent conflict in divided societies, as demonstrated by two case studies: Bulgaria and Macedonia. At a time when democracy promotion is increasingly becoming part of international relations and foreign policy, this study offers some poignant lessons for democratization and conflict resolution in places such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Israel/Palestine to name but a few.

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; Building democracy in a post-Cold War world: a theoretical overview; Democratisation and conflict in multi-ethnic societies; Post-Communist politics in the Balkans; From Moscow to Brussels: Bulgaria's road to democracy and inter-ethnic peace; Democratising for peace and security: the case of the Republic of Macedonia; Interethnic relations and conflict in the context of democratisation: a comparative assessment of Bulgaria and Macedonia; Conclusion: prospects and limitations of democracy and peaceful cohabitation in multi-ethnic states; Bibliography; Index.

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Jenny Engström


'Well argued and rich in empirical detail, this is a fascinating study of the opportunities and constraints of democratization in multi-ethnic societies. Engström makes an important contribution to our understanding of the political dynamics of ethnicity and democracy, combining a well-conceptualized theoretical framework with two fascinating case studies into an insightful comparative analysis that is relevant far beyond the Balkans.' Stefan Wolff, University of Nottingham, UK  ' ...a theoretically well-grounded book, written in an accessible style which offers an insightful and well-researched appraisal of the impact of political pluralism on ethno-nationalist disputes... Tom Gallagher, University of Bradford, UK '...the author provides multidimensional explanations of the prospects and restraints for democratisation in multi-ethnic societies. The author presents an effective combination of theoretical grounds with two captivating case studies... this book would be of interest to a wide range of experts, political scientists, scholars in international relations, and policy makers on domestic and international scene, namely anyone interested in the concept of democracy and political pluralism on ethno-nationalist disputes.' Balkan Academic News 'This book is recommended to both students of Balkan studies and international lawyers interested in learning more about an often neglected part of contemporary Europe...' International Peacekeeping Journal 'With Democratisation and the Prevention of Violent Conflict, Engström makes an important contribution to the field of peace studies...She succeeds in her main quest to examine critically theories arguing that democratic principles and institutions are likely to have destructive consequences for countries with interethnic grievances among different groups.' Ethnopolitics