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chap 4 of the challenge of third world development

chap 4 of the challenge of third world development - POLI...

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POLI 227 Chap 4: the politics of cultural pluralism and ethnic conflict - 21 st century: ethnic, racial, and religious tensions periodically punctuated by outbreaks of brutality and carnage - Such conflicts are not new – a century earlier (1915-1916) Turkey’s gvt massacred perhaps 1.5 million Armenians within that country’s borders - During the 20 th C, religious conflicts (India and Lebanon), tribal animosities (Nigeria and Rwanda), racial prejudice (south Africa), and other forms of ethnic rancor frequently produced violent confrontations, civil wars, and genocidal activity - As we begin a new century, the level of ethnically based internal conflict remains far higher than in the decades prior to the 1990s, in marked contrast to the dramatic decline in wars between nations in the same period o Violent conflict = internal strife tied to cultural, tribal. Religious, or other ethnic animosities o Nearly 2/3 rd of all armed conflicts included an ethnic component. Ethnic conflict = 4 times more likely than interstate wars poor, densely populated countries, including several in Africa, will experience increased ethnic conflict over scarce resources (such as farm or grazing land) in the coming decades interethnic friction and violence can also erupt in western democracies and in former communist countries BUT ethnic conflict = particularly wide spread in regions of the third world b/c LDCs tend to have more ethnically diverse pop b/c their political systems often lack the institutions or experience needed to resolve these tensions peacefully – 275 minorities at risk – 85% of that population at risk lives in the LDCs Defining ethnicity Ethnic identity: social construction – a way that certain groups have come to view themselves as distinct from others over time. Based on a belief on a common descent and on shared experiences and cultural traits - in times of great uncertainty or crisis, intellectuals and politicians are likely to create historical myths that give their ethnic group a sense of security in the face of perceived external challenges - of all groups that men attach themselves to, ethnic groups seem the most encompassing and enduring - once individuals begin to accept the group label imposed on them, even externally created classifications become politically relevant - in the threatening environment associated with modernization and social change, “fear, anxiety, and insecurity at the individual level can be reduced within the womb of the ethnic collectivity” - ethnic divisions lead to ethnic tensions or even conflict Ethnic and state boundaries: 1
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- underlying cause of most internal ethnic conflict is that boundaries for nations and other ethnicities frequently fail to coincide with boundaries for states - out of 191 independent countries: 82% contain 2 or more ethnic groups - colonialism = one factor contributing to ethnic discord Types of ethnic-cultural divisions: Overlapping categories: nationality, tribe, race, and religion!!!
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