Understanding Life in the Borderlands: Boundaries in Depth and in Motion

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The past two decades have seen an intense, interdisciplinary interest in the border areas between states—inhabited territories located on the margins of a power center or between power centers. This timely and highly original collection of essays edited by noted scholar I. William Zartman is an attempt “to begin to understand both these areas and the interactions that occur within and across them”—that is, to understand how borders affect the groups living along them and the nature of the land and people abutting on and divided by boundaries.

These essays highlight three defining features of border areas: borderlanders constitute an experiential and culturally identifiable unit; borderlands are characterized by constant movement (in time, space, and activity); and in their mobility, borderlands always prepare for the next move at the same time that they respond to the last one. The ten case studies presented range over four millennia and provide windows for observing the dynamics of life in borderlands. They also have policy relevance, especially in creating an awareness of borderlands as dynamic social spheres and of the need to anticipate the changes that given policies will engender—changes that will in turn require their own solutions. Contrary to what one would expect in this age of globalization, says Zartman, borderlands maintain their own dynamics and identities and indeed spread beyond the fringes of the border and reach deep into the hinterland itself.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This is a highly original scholarly collection on an important topic—the borderlands between the states. The editor has done a superb job of bringing together scholars from a variety of disciplines. Zartman's juxtaposition of three spatial models of boundaries is very useful for exploding some of the predominant nationalist and state-centric myths surrounding boundaries, especially within policy circles. In addition, the book adds new insights into the various processes that lead to conflict between borderlands and the center. Overall, this is an impressive volume both for its original scholarship and its perceptions regarding our theoretical understanding about boundaries and borderlands."--John Vasquez, Thomas B. Mackie Scholar in International Relations, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

"Understanding Life in the Borderlands offers everything an edited volume should have and almost never does—thesis, conversation among authors, sparkling case studies, and brilliant theoretical analysis. In the hands of the book's contributors, Zartman's model of borderlands as dynamic social processes, where the intractable complexities of life and the ingenuities of people meet the rigidities of sharp political boundaries, offers an exciting, multidisciplinary advance in our understanding of the relationships between places and spaces."--Ian S. Lustick, author of Unsettled States, Disputed Lands

"An imaginative tour de force, tour du monde, and tour du temps that brings together multiple strands of scholarship covering four millennia and four continents to help us understand the nature and impact of our globalized condition. Today, all lands are borderlands."--Dr. Mary Ellen Lane, Executive Director, Council of American Overseas Research Centers

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Product Details

Meet the Author

I. William Zartman is Jacob Blaustein Professor Emeritus of International Organizations and Conflict Resolution and Director of the Conflict Management Program, Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, The Johns Hopkins University. Zartman has written, edited, or coedited some twenty books, including Peacemaking in International Conflict: Methods and Techniques and Cowardly Lions: Missed Opportunities to Prevent Deadly Conflict and State Collapse.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

introduction. Identity, Movement, and Response 1
I. William Zartman, The Johns Hopkins University

Part I. Structures in Evolution
chapter one. Borderland Dynamics in the Era of the Pyramid Builders in Egypt 21
Miroslav Bárta, Charles University

chapter two. Confl ict and Control on the Ottoman- Greek Border 40
George Gavrilis, University of Texas at Austin

chapter three. Illicit Trade and the Emergence of Albania and Yemen 58
Isa Blumi, Georgia State University

chapter four. On the Margin of Statehood? State- Society Relations in African Borderlands 85
Judith Vorrath, Center for Security Studies, ETH Zurich

chapter five. Change and Non- change in the U.S.-Mexican Borderlands after NAFTA 105
David Stea, Jamie Zech, and Melissa Gray, Texas State University– San Marcos

Part II. Identities in Transition

chapter six. Colonialism or Conviviencia in Frankish Cyprus? 133
James G. Schryver, University of Minnesota, Morris

chapter seven. Constructing National Identity in Ottoman Macedonia 160
Ipek K. Yosmaoglu, University of Wisconsin–Madison

chapter eight. Pioneers and Refugees: Arabs and Jews in the Jordan River Valley 189
Rachel S. Havrelock, University of Illinois at Chicago

chapter nine. Who’s Who across the U.S.-Mexico Border: Identities in Transition 217
Harriett Romo and Raquel R. Márquez, University of Texas at San Antonio

chapter ten. Looking across the Horizon 235
Shelley Feldman, Cornell University

conclusion. Borderland Policy: Keeping Up with Change 245
I. William Zartman, The Johns Hopkins University

References 251

Contributors 279

Index 283

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