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HomelandsShifting Borders and Territorial Disputes$
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Nadav G. Shelef

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780801453489

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801453489.001.0001

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(p.197) Conclusion

Nadav G. Shelef

Cornell University Press

This concluding chapter highlights the lessons from the empirical exploration of homelands and their contraction. It reevaluates how one identifies territorial partitions and reassesses the question of whether partitions can be used to resolve conflict. Partitions can succeed in resolving nationalist conflicts where beliefs about the homeland's extent change. While drawing a new border is usually not enough on its own, contexts in which evolutionary dynamics operate on homelands are more likely to experience such transformations. Partitions may therefore be more likely to contribute to peace where the society that lost access to part of its homeland is characterized by long-lasting domestic political contestation. To be successful, in other words, policy makers advocating partitions need to pay as much attention to creating or maintaining domestic political institutions that foster such contestation within the states on either side of the border as to where the particular line is drawn.

Keywords:   homelands, territorial partitions, nationalist conflicts, borders, evolutionary dynamics, domestic political contestation, domestic politics

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