A global comparison of non-sovereign island territories: the search for ‘true equality’
Ferdinand, Malcom; Oostindie, Gert; Veenendaal, Wouter (2019), A global comparison of non-sovereign island territories: the search for ‘true equality’, Island Studies Journal, 14. 10.24043/isj.75
TypeArticle accepté pour publication ou publié
External document linkhttps://doi.org/10.24043/isj.75
Journal nameIsland Studies Journal
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Institut de Recherche Interdisciplinaire en Sciences Sociales [IRISSO]
Abstract (EN)or a great majority of former colonies, the outcome of decolonization was independence. Yet scattered across the globe, remnants of former colonial empires are still non-sovereign as part of larger metropolitan states. There is little drive for independence in these territories, virtually all of which are small island nations, also known as sub-national island jurisdictions (SNIJs). Why do so many former colonial territories choose to remain non-sovereign? In this paper we attempt to answer this question by conducting a global comparative study of non-sovereign jurisdictions. We start off by analyzing their present economic, social and political conditions, after which we assess local levels of (dis)content with the contemporary political status, and their articulation in postcolonial politics. We find that levels of discontent and frustration covary with the particular demographic, socio- economic and historical-cultural conditions of individual territories. While significant independence movements can be observed in only two or three jurisdictions, in virtually all cases there is profound dissatisfaction and frustration with the contemporary non-sovereign arrangement and its outcomes. Instead of achieving independence, the territories’ real struggle nowadays is for obtaining ‘true equality’ with the metropolis, as well as recognition of their distinct cultural identities.
Subjects / Keywordsdecolonization; equality; independence; islands; non-sovereign; sub-national island jurisdictions
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