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Crafting State-Nations

India and Other Multinational Democracies

Political wisdom holds that the political boundaries of a state necessarily coincide with a nation's perceived cultural boundaries. Today, the sociocultural diversity of many polities renders this understanding obsolete. This volume provides the framework for the state-nation, a new paradigm that addresses the need within democratic nations to accommodate distinct ethnic and cultural groups within a country while maintaining national political coherence.

First introduced briefly in 1996 by Alfred Stepan and Juan J. Linz, the state-nation is a country with significant multicultural—even multinational—components that engenders strong identification and loyalty from its citizens. Here, Indian political scholar Yogendra Yadav joins Stepan and Linz to outline and develop the concept further. The core of the book documents how state-nation policies have helped craft multiple but complementary identities in India in contrast to nation-state policies in Sri Lanka, which contributed to polarized and warring identities. The authors support their argument with the results of some of the largest and most original surveys ever designed and employed for comparative political research. They include a chapter discussing why the U.S. constitutional model, often seen as the preferred template for all the world's federations, would have been particularly inappropriate for crafting democracy in politically robust multinational countries such as India or Spain. To expand the repertoire of how even unitary states can respond to territorially concentrated minorities with some secessionist desires, the authors develop a revised theory of federacy and show how such a formula helped craft the recent peace agreement in Aceh, Indonesia.

Empirically thorough and conceptually clear, Crafting State-Nations will have a substantial impact on the study of comparative political institutions and the conception and understanding of nationalism and democracy.

About the Authors

Alfred Stepan is the Wallace Sayre Professor of Government at Columbia University. His books include Democracies in Danger, Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation, and The Breakdown of Democratic Regimes, all also published by Johns Hopkins, the last two with Juan J. Linz. Juan J. Linz is Sterling Professor Emeritus of Political and Social Science at Yale University. In addition to the works coauthored and coedited with Professor Stepan, Professor Linz has published works on democracy, democratization, and comparative politics, including Sultanistic Regimes, also published by Johns Hopkins. Yogendra Yadav is the codirector of Lokniti and a Senior Fellow with the Center for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS), Delhi, India. He has written articles for Hindi- and English-language newspapers and magazines, is a member of the editorial collective of the monthly Hindi-language magazine Samayik Varta, and is the general editor of Lokchintan Granthamala, a four-volume series on social science published in Hindi.

Reviews

"Useful and important."—Choice

"For its conceptual innovation, erudition, and real-world applicability, this book deserves to be widely read . . . The authors tell us that the goal of their analysis is "to expand our collective political imaginations" (p. xiv) about how to combine democracy and ethnic diversity. They have brilliantly succeeded in meeting that goal."—Ashutosh Varshney, Journal of Democracy

"This book offers a compelling account of "state-nation" -ism as a political model."—Louise Tillin, Publius

"Remarkably erudite and conceptually innovative, Crafting State-Nations will reconfigure the debate on nations and nationalism, and on the relationship between national diversity and political institutions. The authors have brilliantly succeeded in expanding our political imaginations."—Ashutosh Varshney, Brown University

"The book makes a very timely and important intervention to understanding nationalism and democracy in the study of comparative politics."—Rohit K. Dasgupta, Asian Affairs

"As they intended, Stepan, Linz, and Yadav have imagined alternative democratic formations for managing deeply pluralistic societies. Their models of state-nations, and of federacies, expand the realm of what might be considered politically possible in democracies. For this reason, their work will be of interest to scholars interested in pluralistic societies and concerned about democracy in all parts of the world."—Daniel Jasper, International Journal on World Peace

The Johns Hopkins University Press

9780801897238 : crafting-state-nations-stepan-linz-yadav
Hardback
336 Pages
$63.00 USD
9780801897245 : crafting-state-nations-stepan-linz-yadav
Paperback / softback
336 Pages
$33.00 USD

Other Titles by Alfred Stepan

Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation

Juan J. Linz, Alfred Stepan
May 2011 - The Johns Hopkins University Press
$31.00 USD - Paperback / softback
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Democracies in Danger

edited by Alfred Stepan
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The Breakdown of Democratic Regimes

edited by Juan J. Linz and Alfred Stepan
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Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation

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Sultanistic Regimes

edited by Houchang E. Chehabi and Juan J. Linz
May 1998 - Johns Hopkins University Press
$31.00 USD - Paperback / softback

The Failure of Presidential Democracy

edited by Juan J. Linz and Arturo Valenzuela
Feb 1994 - Johns Hopkins University Press
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