Ethnicity and Civil Society in Contemporary Afghanistan
Abstract:This article focuses on the critical question of ethnicity and politics in Afghanistan. It examines current conceptual models of ethnicity and their application to present-day political affairs in the country. Research shows that it is not the presence of ethnic groups per se that leads to violence or instability but the absence of civil society and democratic governance and norms. Lessons may be drawn from Afghanistan's neighbors to the north. These Central Asian nations present cases of emerging civil societies, which are fragile, fragmented, and strongly influenced by the international donor community. After 23 years of war in Afghanistan, repression and neglect have had a devastating effect on civil society.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: January 1, 2005
The Middle East Institute has published The Middle East Journal quarterly since 1947. The Journal provides original and objective research and analysis, as well as source material, on the area from Morocco to Pakistan and including Central Asia. The Journal provides the background necessary for an understanding and appreciation of the region's political and economic development, cultural heritage, ethnic and religious diversity.
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