Majorities, Minorities, and the Future of Nationhood

Cambridge University Press (2022)
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Abstract

The design of democratic institutions includes a variety of barriers to protect against the tyranny of the majority, including international human rights, cultural minority rights, and multiculturalism. In the twenty-first century, majorities have re-asserted themselves, sometimes reasonably, referring to social cohesion and national identity, at other times in the form of populist movements challenging core foundations of liberal democracy. This volume intervenes in this debate by examining the legitimacy of conflicting majority and minority claims. Are majorities a legal concept, holding rights and subject to limitations? How can we define a sense of nationhood that brings groups together rather than tears them apart? In this volume, world-leading experts are brought together for the first time to debate the rights of both majorities and minorities. The outcome is a fascinating exchange on one of the greatest challenges facing liberal democracies today.

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