Reconceptualizing the relationship between the International Community and the Nationalist Parties in Bosnia-Herzegovina

Meinshausen, Paul
This thesis is an endeavor to develop a more thorough and nuanced understanding of the relationship between international and local actors in the post-Dayton state-building process in Bosnia. While state-building in Bosnia has received a considerable amount of attention and study, apprehension and depiction of the relationship between the international community and Bosnian governing officials has remained relatively homogeneous. This dominant account of the relationship has been that it is a contentious and oppositional one. To criticize the approach I highlighted two of its problematic aspects. These were the conception of the state, in the abstract, as a highly unified and cohesive entity. And, the depiction of internal and external as isolated and fixed actor-identities. The central argument of this thesis is that the international community and the nationalist parties (representing respectively the external and internal state actors) have become united in a mutually advantageous and mutually-reinforcing process of sharing power, responsibility, and blame. This process has been apparently oppositional but effectively cooperative, so that the outcome of twelve years of state-building has been the continued relevance and effective entrenchment of both the international community and the nationalist parties in the Bosnian state.


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Citation Formats
P. Meinshausen, “Reconceptualizing the relationship between the International Community and the Nationalist Parties in Bosnia-Herzegovina,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2008.