Statehood À La Carte in The Caribbean and The Pacific: Secession, Regionalism, and Postcolonial Politics

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Abstract

This book explains how leaders in the Caribbean and Pacific regions balance the autonomy-viability dilemma of postcolonial statehood - that political self-determination is a hollow achievement unless it is accompanied by economic development - by practising statehood à la carte. Previous research has focused on the pursuit of decolonial self-determination through and above the nation state, via regionalism and internationalism, or by creating non-sovereign alternatives to it. This book looks at how communities have sought the same goals below the state, including via secession and devolution. Downsizing is typically portrayed as the antithesis of progressive, cosmopolitan internationalism and employed as evidence for the claim that the age of anticolonial self-determination has ended. In this book, Jack Corbett shows how these movements are animated by similar ideas and motivations that are rendered viable by the simultaneous pursuit of regional integration and forms of non-sovereignty. He argues that the à la carte pursuit of political and economic independence through, above, and below the state, and via non-sovereign alternatives to it, is a pragmatic response to the contradictions inherent to coloniality.

Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationOxford UK
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages321
ISBN (Electronic)9780191954795
ISBN (Print)9780192864246
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

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