Rethinking Statehood in Post-Revolutionary Tunisia

  • Ruth Hanau Santini
Part of the Reform and Transition in the Mediterranean book series (RTM)


The chapter concentrates on the organized hypocrisy of domestic sovereignty by analyzing different shapes and formats of areas of limited statehood (ALS) in post-2011 Tunisia, both on a geographical and functional or sectoral level. In ALS, the capacity to implement and enforce central decisions is lacking and there is no monopoly on the use of force (Risse, T. Governance Without a State? Policies and Politics in Areas of Limited Statehood. New York: Columbia University Press, 2013). The restriction of statehood can be sectoral (only in some policy areas), territorial (only on some parts of the territory), temporal (only for a certain amount of time), and social (only with regard to specific parts of the population).

By ‘organised hypocrisy’, Krasner (Sovereignty: Organized Hypocrisy. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1999) and Lipson (European Journal of International Relations, 13(1), 5–34, 2007) refer to the inconsistency between rhetoric and action resulting from conflicting material and ideational pressures, in particular those derived from the clash between the logic of consequences and the logic of appropriateness. This chapter aims to set the stage for a dynamic reading of post-revolutionary state-society relations, in the tradition set by Migdal (Strong Societies and Weak States: State-Society Relations and State Capabilities in the Third World. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1988) and others of overcoming the binary opposition between the state and societal forces and look at the state in society. By investigating how, within areas of limited statehood, dynamics of hybrid governance emerge and manifest themselves, the chapter will attempt at start illustrating the contentious and complex, both domestic and external, political dynamics observed in the post-2011 Tunisian trajectory.


Limited statehood Sovereignty Governance Tunisia 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ruth Hanau Santini
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Naples - L’OrientaleNaplesItaly

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