Legitimacy is generally a term that is associated with the state. The term surfaces when there are problems with state legitimacy—when it is lacking or absent. This present volume attempts to think through the relevance of the concept of legitimacy for other political actors than the state. Rebel groups, in the shape of insurgents, terrorists, warlords and guerrillas, are all engaged in a process of claim making as legitimate actors representing certain political agendas and constituencies. We are interested in dissecting the processes of the emergence of legitimacy in contexts of disorder and conflict. Legitimacy is not only a belief or belief system that informs social action, but it is also a practice with a repertoire of legitimacy claiming, reinforcing, copying and emulating elements. Governance provision is an important legitimacy generating activity, just as it has been in the formation of states. The volume, however, points out that there are many more aspects to legitimacy that deserve attention. The contributors draw on a wide variety of cases and in-depth investigation to bring forward individual and micro-level dynamics related to legitimacy claims, as well as bringing forward the often-times problematic role of external actors when it comes to legitimacy and illegitimacy dynamics.
The chapters in this book were originally published in a special issue of Small Wars & Insurgencies.
Table of Contents
Foreword: How legitimacy helps explicate rebel governance Nelson Kasfir Introduction: Rebels & Legitimacy; An Introduction Isabelle Duyvesteyn Part I - The Concept and Practice of Rebel Legitimacy 1. Understanding the Legitimacy of Armed Groups: A Relational Perspective Sukanya Podder 2. (Re-)Emergent Orders: Understanding the Negotiation(s) of Rebel Governance James Worrall 3. Building Legitimacy: Interactional Dynamics and the Popular Evaluation of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in Turkey Eric W. Schoon 4. Civilian Cooperation and Non-Cooperation with Non-State Armed Groups: The Centrality of Obedience and Resistance Ana Arjona 5. Youth between State and Rebel (Dis)Orders: Contesting Legitimacy from Below in Sub-Sahara Africa Mirjam de Bruijn and Jonna Both 6. Militias and the Politics of Legitimacy Ulrich Schneckener Part II - Rebels and Dimensions of External Legitimacy Claims 7. Legitimacy and the Politics of Recognition in Kosovo Lee J. M. Seymour 8. All Counterinsurgency is Local: Counterinsurgency and Rebel Legitimacy Andrew J. Gawthorpe 9. ‘Legitimacy is the Main Objective’: Legitimation in Population-Centric Counterinsurgency Martijn Kitzen 10. From rebel to Quasi-State: Governance, Diplomacy and Legitimacy in the Midst of Afghanistan’s Wars (1979–2001) Romain Malejacq 11. Subcontracting State-Building Abbey Steele and Jacob N. Shapiro
Isabelle Duyvesteyn is Professor of International Studies/Global History at the Institute of History at Leiden University, the Netherlands. She is a member of the national Advisory Council for International Affairs in the Netherlands and a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Netherlands Defence Academy (NLDA).