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Empowered Participation or Political Manipulation?

State, Civil Society and Social Funds in Egypt and Bolivia

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Rabab El-Mahdi

Latin America and the Middle East are two of the most important regions of the South and the world, yet they have hardly been studied comparatively in social sciences. This book attempts to fill this gap in the literature through a study of civil society-state relations in Bolivia and Egypt focusing on empowered participatory institutions. Not only are these institutions important in their own right in terms of the amount of resources allocated to them, but they are an important illustration of a rising model of governance and development based on state-civil society cooperation. The study not only helps us understand the nuanced relationship between state and citizen under neoliberalism, but also gives us insights into issues of major theoretical and practical importance, specifically the impact of social reform on processes of democratization, social inclusion, and equity.

Covert Racism

Theories, Institutions, and Experiences

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Edited by Rodney D. Coates

Covert racism, subtle in application, often appears hidden by norms of association, affiliation, group membership and/or identity. As such, covert racism is often excused or confused with mechanisms of exclusion and inclusion, ritual and ceremony, acceptance and rejection. Covert racism operates as a boundary keeping mechanism whose primary purpose is to maintain social distance between racial majorities and racial minorities. Such boundary mechanisms work best when they are assumed natural, legitimate, and normal. These boundary mechanisms are typically taught subconsciously or even unconsciously within social institutions and groups. This volume deals with the theories, institutions and experiences associated with covert racism.

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Edited by Florian Coulmas and Ralph Lützeler

This book provides a comprehensive overview of the impact of low birth-rates and population decline on Japan and Germany. Experts from both countries examine a broad range of issues, from demographic change, social ageing, family policies, family formation, work-life balance, domestic and international migration to business perspectives and labour market issues. Focussed on Japan and Germany, two highly developed countries with extremely low fertility, the chapters of this volume also refer to several other countries for comparison. In the absence of war, famine and pandemics, rapid population decline is a new phenomenon. Japan and Germany are struggling with this reality, but many other countries will follow their example.

Neoliberalism’s Fractured Showcase

Another Chile is Possible

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Edited by Ximena de la Barra

This collection of works by prominent Chilean experts explores the long term effects of neoliberalism. It relentlessly questions Chile's status as a successful and exemplary democratic country. The first part deals with the circumstances that facilitated the establishment of the neoliberal experiment in Chile. This is followed by analysis of the economic, social, environmental, political and human rights impacts of 35 consecutive years of neoliberal policies. Implications for weathering the multi-dimensional global crisis are analyzed in view of Chile`s loss of productive capacities, the shrinking role of the State and its asymmetrical integration into the world economy. The volume concludes by asserting that breaking the status quo is possible, urgent and necessary.


Critical Global Studies, vol. 3

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Ricardo Duchesne

This extensively researched book argues that the development of a libertarian culture was an indispensable component of the rise of the West. The roots of the West's superior intellectual and artistic creativity should be traced back to the aristocratic warlike culture of Indo-European speakers. Among the many fascinating topics discussed are: the ascendancy of multicultural historians and the degradation of European history; China's ecological endowments and imperial windfalls; military revolutions in Europe 1300-1800; the science and chivalry of Henry the Navigator; Judaism and its contribution to Western rationalism; the cultural richness of Max Weber versus the intellectual poverty of Pomeranz, Wong, Goldstone, Goody, and A.G. Frank; change without progress in the East; Hegel's Phenomenology of the [Western] Spirit; Nietzsche and the education of the Homeric Greeks; Kojeve's master-slave dialectic and the Western state of nature; Christian virtues and German aristocratic expansionism.

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Edited by Loek Halman and Malina Voicu

Since the dramatic events in 1989 and 1990, Central and Eastern Europeans have been engaged in a process of democratization and liberalization which are transforming their societies fundamentally. The rapid transformation processes appear to be very differential and the particular patterns are complex to interpret and understand. This volume elaborates on a number of issues that seem particular important for the people in Central and Eastern Europe: the development and working of democracy, the public support for, legitimacy and efficacy of democracy and the free market economy, and of course the stability of the newly established political culture.

The Benefit of Broad Horizons

Intellectual and Institutional Preconditions for a Global Social Science

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Edited by Hans Joas and Barbro Klein

More than perhaps anybody else in the world, the Swedish political scientist and sociologist Björn Wittrock has contributed - both on the intellectual and institutional level - to making a truly global social science possible. This volume contains contributions from twenty-six world-renowned scholars who address different aspects of his ambitious research program as well as current trends in the institutionalization of the social and human sciences. The essays in this volume focus on such topics as: the role of the state; the reintegration of history and the social sciences; the importance of civilizational studies and the comparison of civilizations; the interaction of cultural and social dynamics; the analysis of trends in higher education and the institutionalization of social-scientific research.

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Edited by Eliezer Ben-Rafael and Yitzhak Sternberg

This book is about new forms of religiosity and religious activity emerging in the context of their dialectic relations with contemporary multicultural realities. World religions are effectively a major agent of the multiculturalization of contemporary societies. However, multiculturalism pushes them not only toward change and reforms, but also toward new conflicts between and within them. This process should remind us of the Jewish legend of the Golem – an animated being created by man which finally challenges the latter’s control over it - a dialectic relation, indeed. World religions today greatly contribute to a world (dis)order that is multicultural both when viewed as a whole, and from within most societies that compose it. It is a development that contrasts both with the assumption that globalization implies one-way homogenization and convergence to Western modernity, and the expectation that globalization would be bound to polarize homogeneous civilizations.

The World in World Wars

Experiences, Perceptions and Perspectives from Africa and Asia

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Edited by Heike Liebau, Katrin Bromber, Katharina Lange, Dyala Hamzah and Ravi Ahuja

The volume situates itself within the growing field of research on the global social history of the World Wars. By investigating social and cultural aspects of these wars in African, South Asian and Middle Eastern societies it aims at recovering both the diversity of perspectives and their intersections. Drawing substantially on new sources such as oral accounts, propaganda material and artistic representations, the publication investigates the experiences of combatants and civilians on the frontline and in the rear of the front. It studies spontaneous and organized responses manifested in public debates, propaganda activities, and in individual and collective memories. Questioning conventional periodizations and discussing both wars together, the book analyses broader implications of the wars for African and Asian societies which resulted in significant social and political transformations.

Adversarial Case-Making

An Ethnography of English Crown Court Procedure

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Thomas Scheffer

Cases are not objects at hand for legal decision-making; cases are not echoes from a past crime. Cases are, first of all, made within compound discourse apparatus, here the English Crown Court and the procedure/s attached to it. This book reveals the legal production of cases including their relevant features. The socio-legal ethnography visits the natural sites of adversarial case-making: law firms, barristers’ chambers, and Crown Courts. It examines the role and dynamics of client-lawyer meetings, pre-trial hearings, plea bargaining sessions, and jury trials. It focuses on the lawyers’ case-making activities, their procedural contexts, and the resulting cases. As an ethnographic discourse study, the book develops a trans-sequential perspective on the interrelated events and processes of case-making – and by doing so, overcomes the shortcomings of talk-bias and text-bias. The trans-sequential approach pays out in detailed case studies on an alibi, on guilt, or the barrister’s notes; it pays out as well in cross-case studies dealing with legal care, procedural infrastructure, or the case system in the common law tradition.