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Spaces of Violence in South Asian Democracies

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Citizenship, Nationalist Exclusion, and the (Il)legitimate Use of Force

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This introduction discusses the emergence and consolidation of spaces of violence in South Asia’s democracies from both historical and conceptual perspectives. By revealing the varied experiences and experiments across the subcontinent, it invokes a perspective on democracy and democratic governance that refrains from following the assumptions of most of the democracy research to date, which frames such debates in predominantly normative terms. In this vein, we seek to show how democracy can not only be built on a violent past, but also become the very basis for the emergence of violent spaces, which, more often than not, have unfolded in South Asia’s post-colonial societies, and possibly also in other parts of the world.

Affiliations: 1: Ruhr-University Bochum ; 2: Bielefeld University


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