The Exile Communities: A Surprising Gap in Civicness

Part of the Political Evolution and Institutional Change book series (PEIC)


The major purpose of this book is to discover more about whether and how early socialized political culture affects individual processes of adjusting to institutional changes. The reason for focusing so strongly on the tiny Estonian community is, to repeat what I pointed out already in chapter one, that this group provides us better than most with the rare opportunity of a “natural experiment.” The Estonian interwar generation per se is not what primarily interests me here even though the fate of the Estonian nation is a fascinating story. What instead is of major interest is the way that their cultural reactions to life in exile (and under occupation) can inform the theoretical discussion about the interaction between institutions and culture.


Political Culture Social Trust Political Competition Institutional Pressure Civic Virtue 
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  1. 1.
    Kjell Bergman and Berith Jakobsson, 1984, Ester i Göteborg. Om identitetens bevekelsegrunder, Göteborg: Etnologiska institutionen;Google Scholar
  2. Karl Aun, 1985, The Political Refugees. A History of the Estonians in Canada, Toronto: McClelland & Stewart Ltd.Google Scholar
  3. 2.
    Gabriel Almond and Sidney Verba, 1963, The Civic Culture. Political Attitudes and Democracy in Five Nations, New Jersey, Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  4. For interesting discussions on the need for a balance between subcultures, see, Harry Eckstein, 1998, Lessons for the “Third Wave” from the First. An Essay on Democratisation, available at the Center for the Study of Democracy, UC Irvine’s homepage Scholar
  5. 5.
    Olof Petersson et al., 1998, Demokrati och medborgarskap, Stockholm: SNS förlag, 129–132.Google Scholar
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  7. 9.
    Bo Rothstein, 2000, “Trust, Social Dilemmas and Collective Memories,” Journal of Theoretical Politics, vol. 12, no. 4; Eric M. Uslaner, 2002, The Moral Foundations of Trust, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  8. 12.
    Bo Rothstein, 2003, Sociala fällor och tillitens problem, Stockholm: SNS förlag, 189–193; Kumlin Staffan and Bo Rothstein, 2005, “Making and Breaking Social Capital. The Impact of Welfare-State Institutions,” Comparative Political Studies, vol. 38, no. 4, May.Google Scholar

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© Li Bennich-Björkman 2007

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