Secession as an International Phenomenon: From America's Civil War to Contemporary Separatist Movements

Overview

About half of today’s nation-states originated as some kind of breakaway state. The end of the Cold War witnessed a resurgence of separatist activity affecting nearly every part of the globe and stimulated a new generation of scholars to consider separatism and secession.
 
As the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War approaches, this collection of essays allows us to view within a broader international context one of modern ...

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Overview

About half of today’s nation-states originated as some kind of breakaway state. The end of the Cold War witnessed a resurgence of separatist activity affecting nearly every part of the globe and stimulated a new generation of scholars to consider separatism and secession.
 
As the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War approaches, this collection of essays allows us to view within a broader international context one of modern history's bloodiest conflicts over secession. The contributors to this volume consider a wide range of topics related to secession, separatism, and the nationalist passions that inflame such conflicts. The first section of the book examines ethical and moral dimensions of secession, while subsequent sections look at the American Civil War, conflicts in the Gulf of Mexico, European separatism, and conflicts in the Middle East, Asia, and Africa.
 
The contributors to this book have no common position advocating or opposing secession in principle or in any particular case. All understand it, however, as a common feature of the modern world and as a historic phenomenon of international scope. Some contributors propose that “political divorce,” as secession has come to be called, ought to be subject to rational arbitration and ethical norms, instead of being decided by force. Along with these hopes for the future, Secession as an International Phenomenon offers a somber reminder of the cost the United States paid when reason failed and war was left to resolve the issue.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“These thought-provoking essays explore the role played by secession in state making and state breaking in the modern world. They will be of great interest to students of nationalism and national identity.”—Peter Kolchin, Henry Clay Reed Professor of History, University of Delaware

“Nationalism and secession in combination constitute one of the most important global historical phenomena in modern history, accounting for one half of the world’s nation-states. While all the particular instances are studied, the general historical phenomenon has been too little studied. This book . . . makes a huge contribution to the study of nations and nation making.”—Thomas Bender, author of A Nation Among Nations: America’s Place in World History

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780820330082
  • Publisher: University of Georgia Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/2010
  • Pages: 392
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Don H. Doyle is the McCausland Professor of History at the University of South Carolina. He is author or coeditor of several books including Nationalism in the New World and Nations Divided: America, Italy, and the Southern Question.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Don H. Doyle, Introduction: Union and Secession in the Family of Nations

Part 1. The Problem of Secession
Christopher Wellman, "The Morality of Secession"
David Armitage, "Secession and Civil War"
Peter Radan, "Lincoln, the Constitution, and Secession"
Margaret Moore, "Ethics of Secession and Political Mobilization in Quebec"

Part 2. The Case of the American South
Charles B. Dew, "Lincoln, the Collapse of Deep South Moderation, and the Triumph of Secession: A South Carolina Congressman's Moment of Truth"
Robert E. Bonner, "Proslavery Calculations and the Value of Southern Disunion"
Susan-Mary Grant, "‘How a Free People Conduct a Long War': Sustaining Opposition to Secession in the American Civil War"
Paul Quigley, "Secessionists in an Age of Secession: The Slave South in Transatlantic Perspective"
Frank Towers, "The Origins of the Antimodern South: Romantic Nationalism and the Secession Movement in the American South"

Part 3. Turbulence in the Gulf of Mexico
Andrés Reséndez, "Texas and the Spread of That Troublesome Secessionist Spirit through the Gulf of Mexico Basin"
Terry Rugeley, "The Brief, Glorious History of the Yucatecan Republic: Secession and Violence in Southeast Mexico, 1836-1848"

Part 4. European Separatism
Bruno Coppieters, "Secessionist Conflicts in Europe"
Aleksandar Pavkovic, "By the Force of Arms: Violence and Morality in Secessionist Conflict"
Paul Kubicek, "Structure, Agency, and Secessionism in the Soviet Union and Post-Soviet States"
Stefan Zahlmann, "‘Our Cause was Foredoomed to Failure': Secession in Germany and the United States"

Part 5. The Middle East, Asia, Africa
Peter Sluglett, "Common Sense, or A Step Pregnant with Enormous Consequences: Some Thoughts on the Possible Secession of Iraqi Kurdistan"
Raphael Chijioke Njoku, "Nationalism, Separatism, and Neoliberal Globalism: A Review of Africa and the Quest for Self-Determination since the 1940s"
Alan M. Wachman, "Did Abraham Lincoln Oppose Taiwan's Secession from China?"

Contributors
Index

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