State persecution and vulnerability : a comparative historical analysis of violent ethnocentrism / by Meir Amor
Includes bibliographical references (p. 686-703)
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This dissertation investigates the emergence of total exclusionary social movements and the consequent violent eruptions they precipitated. It examines the most extreme forms of violent ethnocentrism: expulsion and genocide. Its aim is to shed light on the social-psychological aspects of formal-equality and its relations to status politics and state persecution of vulnerable minorities. The social and political aspects of such equalization are examined in five different societies and periods. Though the cases are independent and unique, there is an analogous line of social development in all. The cases are: the expulsion of Jews from Catholic Spain in 1492, the expulsion of Asians from Uganda in 1972, the genocide perpetrated against the Armenians in 1915 Ottoman Turkey, and the Shoah (Holocaust) perpetrated by Nazi Germany against European Jewry. Third Republic France, during the Dreyfus affair, serves as an additional negative case in which state persecution did not occur. Hence, I am looking at three ethnic groups in five different historical periods and sociological settings. The theoretical focus of the dissertation is to assess and compare the political impact that cultural-legal and social demand for formal-equality presented to the societies under investigation. The common feature of the positive cases—in which state persecution occurred—was, their failure to face the challenges that status equalization (conversion in Spain and citizenship rights in the other cases) presented. This work aims at providing an historically informed sociological account of these political failures by comparing cases of violent eruptions of expulsion and/or genocide.
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