The conflict aftermath-- a chance for democracy norm diffusion in post conflict peace building
Stolzke, Michael B.
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Democratization in post-conflict situations is a major challenge, now and in the foreseeable future. Yet, the puzzle of why some of these attempts fail and others succeed is still unresolved. This thesis argues that post-conflict democratization by third parties is, at its core, a norm diffusion process. Successful democratization depends foremost on the acceptance and internalization of democratic norms by the target society. Knowledge of the norm diffusion concept, especially the influence of the two variables, cultural match and norm empowerment on the process might lead to the development and the application of better democratization strategies. This thesis argues that post-conflict situations with their specific features-primarily characterized by value disorientation-offer a unique opportunity for a democratic transition. It examines the cases of the Weimar Republic, the Federal Republic of Germany, and Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosnia) in order to demonstrate the explanatory power of the norm diffusion theory, specifically its added value in studying success and failure of past and present democratization in post-conflict situations.
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