Political evolution in post‐Soviet Central Asia

Treacher, Adrian (1996) Political evolution in post‐Soviet Central Asia. Democratization, 3 (3). 306 - 327. ISSN 13510347

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This article considers the Central Asian republics in the post-Soviet era and the fortunes of western-style democracy to which their respective leaders have committed themselves. A dichotomy emerges between the 'hard' authoritarian approach adopted by Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and the 'soft' authoritarianism of Kazakhstan and Krygystan. Explanations for the authoritarian path, and implicitly for the lack of progress in democratization, are then expanded upon. These range from cultural and religious factors, to economic pressures, and to the role of Russia and the russified administrators and the political system it left behind. Finally, the article highlights the challenges, potential and real, to the perpetuation of the authoritarian culture. The future path of political transition in Central Asia is of major significance because the peaceful and stable development of this geostrategically and economically important region has yet to be secured. The emergence of political cultures centred on democratic values is far from guaranteed. There is nothing to say that such values even have any place in these societies.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Politics
Depositing User: Adrian Treacher
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:32
Last Modified: 26 Jun 2012 08:27
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/26513
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