The Republic of Cyprus’ social and political culture is deeply partitocratic, with a close relationship between state apparatus and the parties that influence the government’s decisions. However, little is known about the social and political implications of the above traits, and even less about how parties influence and are influenced by society at large.
The concept of linkage, which refers to the linking of citizens with government and the political process, is vital in the study of the electoral or ideological considerations of parties. Parties’ decisions regarding their organization and image correlates with the effort made to keep up with public opinion. Party-Society Relations in the Republic of Cyprus adds a new dimension to the study of linkage, considering the complexity of civil society as well as exploring the dynamics of political parties. Bringing together specialists from a range of disciplines, it examines the wider effects of partitocracy on democracy and uses it as a frame for exploring the construction, maintenance or deformation of links between social groups and parties. Through its analysis of both the partisan and societal aspects of party-social relations, it illuminates larger questions concerning the strategic complexity involved when politics and society interact.
Approaching the Republic of Cyprus as a representative case study of partitocratic political culture, this book is a key resource for those interested in party and civil society politics, as well as Cypriot, Mediterranean and South-East European politics.
Chapter 1 Introduction Giorgos Charalambous and Christophoros Christophorou SECTION I– PARTY STRATEGIES TOWARDS SOCIETY Chapter 2 The Cypriot Communists Between Protest and the Establishment: A Second Look at AKEL’s Linkages with Society Giorgos Charalambous and Christophoros Christophorou Chapter 3 DISY’s Linkages with Society: Diverse and Diversified Yiannos Katsourides Chapter 4 Empty Vessels? The Center Parties' Linkages with Society Vassilis Protopapas SECTION II – SOCIETAL STRATEGIES TOWARDS PARTIES Chapter 5 Business Groups Strategies Vis à Vis political Power: invisible dimensions of linkage Andreas Panayiotou Chapter 6 The Connection between Trade Unions and Political Parties in Cyprus Gregoris Ioannou Chapter 7 Sexual Politics – Party Politics: The Rules of Engagement in the Case of Cyprus Nayia Kamenou SECTION III – CROSS-CASE PERSPECTIVES Chapter 8 The Cyprus Conflict and Party–Society Relations: Between Ethno-nationalism and Peace Formation Birte Vogel Chapter 9 Communication and Interactions Between Parties and Youth Organisations in Cyprus Dimitris Trimithiotis Chapter 10 The Migration Question, Political Parties and the Cypriot State of Dissensus Nicos Trimikliniotis Conclusions Partitocracy and Democracy in Cyprus: Concluding Reflections and Questions Paschalis Kitromilides
Approachably written by an interdisciplinary team of experts, this is a fascinating book - and not just for those interested in Cyprus and Southern Europe. Anyone who wants to understand political parties, and the complex web of societal connections they are still capable of spinning in some places, will get a lot out of reading it. Recommended.
Tim Bale, Queen Mary University of London
This book fulfills a gap in the literature because it sheds light on a little-studied case, that of the Republic of Cyprus. Thus the book includes both a part devoted to the study of Cypriot political parties and a part devoted to how non-partisan groups use strategies to affect the behavior of parties. Needless to say, there is also a part in the book where issues of ethnic conflict are also covered. In brief, this is a book which will be of interest to students, scholars and practitioners interested in how the relations between parties and society affect the quality of contemporary democracies, based on a little-studied yet quite revealing case study.
Dimitri A. Sotiropoulos, University of Athens