Limited Statehood: A Critical Perspective

Cover: The Oxford Handbook of Transformations of the State

Cover: The Oxford Handbook of Transformations of the State

Thomas Risse – 2015

The modern fully sovereign state as the template for organizing our understanding of statehood is largely a myth. The most common version of statehood is characterized by “areas of limited statehood:” these are parts of the territory or policy areas in which the central government lacks the capacity to implement decisions and/or its monopoly over the means of violence is challenged. These areas are not ungoverned spaces or lacking governance. Collective goods are often provided under extremely constrained domestic sovereignty—by a variety of state and non-state, local and transnational plus international actors. In this chapter I first conceptualize limited statehood and show its empirical validity as the default situation in the international system. Second, I criticize the prevailing paradigms on statehood and state transformations as biased toward Western and European modernity. Third, I demonstrate that there are functioning alternatives to the “shadow of hierarchy” cast by the state.

Title
Limited Statehood: A Critical Perspective
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Location
Oxford
Keywords
state, meta-governance, statehood, fragile states, Research Project A1
Date
2015
Identifier
ISBN 9780199691586
Appeared in
Leibfried, Stephan/Huber, Evelyne/Lange, Matthew/Levy, Jonah D. /Nullmeier, Frank/Stephens, John D. (eds.): The Oxford Handbook of Transformations of the State, 152-168.
Language
eng
Type
Text