Where Nation-States Come From: Institutional Change in the Age of Nationalism

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9780691134673: Where Nation-States Come From: Institutional Change in the Age of Nationalism

To date, the world can lay claim to little more than 190 sovereign independent entities recognized as nation-states, while by some estimates there may be up to eight hundred more nation-state projects underway and seven to eight thousand potential projects. Why do a few such endeavors come to fruition while most fail? Standard explanations have pointed to national awakenings, nationalist mobilizations, economic efficiency, military prowess, or intervention by the great powers. Where Nation-States Come From provides a compelling alternative account, one that incorporates an in-depth examination of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, and their successor states.


Philip Roeder argues that almost all successful nation-state projects have been associated with a particular political institution prior to independence: the segment-state, a jurisdiction defined by both human and territorial boundaries. Independence represents an administrative upgrade of a segment-state. Before independence, segmental institutions shape politics on the periphery of an existing sovereign state. Leaders of segment-states are thus better positioned than other proponents of nation-state endeavors to forge locally hegemonic national identities. Before independence, segmental institutions also shape the politics between the periphery and center of existing states. Leaders of segment-states are hence also more able to challenge the status quo and to induce the leaders of the existing state to concede independence. Roeder clarifies the mechanisms that link such institutions to outcomes, and demonstrates that these relationships have prevailed around the world through most of the age of nationalism.

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From the Inside Flap:

"This is an original, rigorous, and indeed fascinating book. Using a wide range of data and methods, it argues that the institutional design of the units of political authority in the international system explains the origins of nation-states over nearly two hundred years. It is relevant to a remarkable range of debates in comparative and international politics; to those who work on nationalism, state-building, and democratization; and to specialists in both sub-Saharan Africa and postcommunist Eurasia."--Valerie Bunce, Cornell University

"A superb work. First, it furnishes an outstanding model of how to 'do' social science. Second, it provides a great deal of well-organized information about state formation and nonformation, especially as concerns the Soviet state and the myriad tugs-of-war over territorial and ethnic sovereignty that have shaped post-Soviet politics. Third, it furnishes conclusions--complete with overwhelming evidence in their support--that will have immediate practical implications for world politics. Fourth, it is a good read: without cutting scholarly corners, it offers many delightful moments."--M. Steven Fish, University of California, Berkeley

About the Author:

Philip G. Roeder is professor of political science at the University of California, San Diego.

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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, United States, 2007. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. To date, the world can lay claim to little more than 190 sovereign independent entities recognized as nation-states, while by some estimates there may be up to eight hundred more nation-state projects underway and seven to eight thousand potential projects. Why do a few such endeavors come to fruition while most fail? Standard explanations have pointed to national awakenings, nationalist mobilizations, economic efficiency, military prowess, or intervention by the great powers. Where Nation-States Come From provides a compelling alternative account, one that incorporates an in-depth examination of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, and their successor states. Philip Roeder argues that almost all successful nation-state projects have been associated with a particular political institution prior to independence: the segment-state, a jurisdiction defined by both human and territorial boundaries. Independence represents an administrative upgrade of a segment-state. Before independence, segmental institutions shape politics on the periphery of an existing sovereign state. Leaders of segment-states are thus better positioned than other proponents of nation-state endeavors to forge locally hegemonic national identities. Before independence, segmental institutions also shape the politics between the periphery and center of existing states. Leaders of segment-states are hence also more able to challenge the status quo and to induce the leaders of the existing state to concede independence. Roeder clarifies the mechanisms that link such institutions to outcomes, and demonstrates that these relationships have prevailed around the world through most of the age of nationalism. Codice libro della libreria AAH9780691134673

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Philip G. Roeder
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Descrizione libro Princeton University Press, United States, 2007. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. To date, the world can lay claim to little more than 190 sovereign independent entities recognized as nation-states, while by some estimates there may be up to eight hundred more nation-state projects underway and seven to eight thousand potential projects. Why do a few such endeavors come to fruition while most fail? Standard explanations have pointed to national awakenings, nationalist mobilizations, economic efficiency, military prowess, or intervention by the great powers. Where Nation-States Come From provides a compelling alternative account, one that incorporates an in-depth examination of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, and their successor states. Philip Roeder argues that almost all successful nation-state projects have been associated with a particular political institution prior to independence: the segment-state, a jurisdiction defined by both human and territorial boundaries. Independence represents an administrative upgrade of a segment-state. Before independence, segmental institutions shape politics on the periphery of an existing sovereign state.Leaders of segment-states are thus better positioned than other proponents of nation-state endeavors to forge locally hegemonic national identities. Before independence, segmental institutions also shape the politics between the periphery and center of existing states. Leaders of segment-states are hence also more able to challenge the status quo and to induce the leaders of the existing state to concede independence. Roeder clarifies the mechanisms that link such institutions to outcomes, and demonstrates that these relationships have prevailed around the world through most of the age of nationalism. Codice libro della libreria AAH9780691134673

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