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Multiculturalism and Minority Rights in the Arab World$
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Will Kymlicka and Eva Pföstl

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199675135

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199675135.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use.date: 23 May 2022

Bringing the Tribe Back In? The Western Sahara Dispute, Ethno-history, and the Imagineering of Minority Conflicts in the Arab World

Bringing the Tribe Back In? The Western Sahara Dispute, Ethno-history, and the Imagineering of Minority Conflicts in the Arab World

Chapter:
(p.127) 6 Bringing the Tribe Back In? The Western Sahara Dispute, Ethno-history, and the Imagineering of Minority Conflicts in the Arab World
Source:
Multiculturalism and Minority Rights in the Arab World
Author(s):

Jacob Mundy

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199675135.003.0006

This chapter explores the Western Sahara dispute as a case study of how ethnic disputes have been “imagineered” in the Arab world. While some commentators have defended territorial power-sharing as the appropriate solution for Western Sahara, based on European models of federalism or territorial autonomy, others have argued that such models have little saliency in Arab contexts, and that ‘Arab problems require Arab solutions’. Through an analysis of the politics of representing the Western Sahara conflict by both the Moroccan government and Sahrawi nationalists, this chapter argues that both sides of this problematization—“Arab solutions” and “Arab problems”— are untenable and reifying, and fail to elucidate how the structures of global politics are largely at fault for the prolongation of suffering in Western Sahara. Since ethnic conflicts in the Arab world are already deeply penetrated by global power structures, the solution must also span local and global levels.

Keywords:   Africa, Western Sahara, Morocco, power sharing, autonomy, federalism, territorial disputes, ethnic conflicts

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