American Nation Building, 1945–2005: Costs and Consequences

  • Albert Somit
  • Steven A. Peterson

Abstract

To summarize our argument so far: With rare exceptions, attempts to export democracy (i.e., nation building) have failed. They have failed because (1) as social primates, our species has an inherent bias toward hierarchical political and social systems; (2) given this innate bias, democracy requires special “enabling conditions”; and (3) these conditions cannot be created overnight but take literally decades to evolve and mature. In support of this admittedly neo-Darwinian explanation, we noted the overwhelming predominance of authoritarian polities throughout history; that even today democracies still constitute only a modest minority of the world’s governments; and that nation building has so far achieved very few successes.

Keywords

Assure Sewage Defend Iraq Plague 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Albert Somit and Steven A. Peterson 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Albert Somit
  • Steven A. Peterson

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations