Toward a Proceduralist Theory of Secession

Daniel Marc Weinstock
Université de Montréal
Substantive theorists of secession face a problem explaining why the international community ought on their view to withhold recognition from secessions which involve a loss in terms of the substantive criteria they privilege; this is so because the normal electoral politics giving rise to such a loss should not in their opinion meet with any adverse international reaction. The substantive theory of David Miller uses criteria for the legitimacy of secessions which give rise to strangely amoral consequences. A procedural theory of secession is to be preferred on both moral and pragmatic grounds; this is one which that countenance secession when appropriate procedural hurdles are cleared, regardless of the substance of the claims put forward by secessionists to justify secession
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