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How a crisis in the moral economy of development policy challenges state legitimacy

Aziz, M. H. (2012) How a crisis in the moral economy of development policy challenges state legitimacy. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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This PhD thesis accounts for the legitimacy challenges faced by the state that are specifically created by organized industrial workers through their anti-state unrest. It also relates such legitimacy challenges to recurring regime breakdown in unconsolidated democracies. I thus answer the question: how can we more fully account for labour-led legitimacy challenges to the state that at key times contribute to regime breakdown in unconsolidated democracies? I build on the dominant elite-driven explanations that are already emphasized in the existing theoretical literature by highlighting bottom-up labour mobilization that has not been given sufficient consideration. Moreover, I have uniquely framed such bottom-up mobilization in terms of “shared norms” in a very particular “moral economy” centred around development policy. These norms were in part created by the state as part of its informal “legitimation project” with labour. Key to the state-labour relationship within this moral economy is workers’ expectation of certain subsistence provision from the ruling regime in return for its role in state-led industrial production and national development. Such expectation of specific subsistence provision was partly built up by the state itself through its own rhetoric and policies; but this also set up the state to frequently lose legitimacy when such provision could not be delivered or maintained.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2012 M. H. Aziz
Library of Congress subject classification: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Sets: Departments > Government

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