Voice or Recognition? Comparing Strategies for Accommodating Territorial Minorities in Multinational States

Nicola McEwen, Andre Lecours

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Like many Commonwealth countries, Canada and the United Kingdom have faced challenges to their territorial integrity from assertive minority nationalist movements, especially in Québec and Scotland. Successive governments have faced the task of identifying strategies to accommodate these nations within the territorial framework of the existing state. The accommodation of national minorities is a central task of territorial management within multinational states, and essential to the state's survival. This article draws upon Hirschman's analysis of exit, voice and loyalty, as well as Taylor's emphasis upon the importance of recognition, to identify the contrasting accommodation strategies evident in Canada and the UK. It concludes by suggesting that successful territorial accommodation will depend upon the employment of strategies that provide for recognition of the status of national minorities as well as the expression of their distinctive voice within the multinational state.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)220-243
Number of pages23
JournalCommonwealth and Comparative Politics
Volume46
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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