Consociationalism and segmented cleavages : the case of Lebanon

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Consociationalism and segmented cleavages : the case of Lebanon


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Title: Consociationalism and segmented cleavages : the case of Lebanon
Author: Nicolaysen, Leif Gunnar Nyseth
Date: Jun-2008
Type: Master thesis; Mastergradsoppgave
Abstract: Consociationalism and segmented cleavages. The case of Lebanon is about the political development of Lebanon. It is intended to be an exploration, as objective as possible, to the development of major cleavages of Lebanese society related to Lebanese consociationalism. The “science of experience” has been useful as a basis of this thesis, thus the thesis is based on a theoretical framework, exploring Lebanese society from a consociational and a consensus – integrative, cross-cutting theory. The turbulence of Lebanese society the last century and a half questions the stabilizing effects of the consociational institutions which Lebanon are based on. Lebanese consociationalism is in this work claimed to be based on wrong assumptions to which cleavages that divide the Lebanese society. The political system has been claimed to be disproportional, and to favour the domination of one community over others and it is accused of not including major social and secular forces into politics. This thesis is dedicated to find what makes Lebanese consociationalism fail in mirroring and represent all major groups of society; which groups the Lebanese society consists of and which political, cultural or religious cleavages that’s divides them. Finally it explores some alternative institutional solutions, inspired by the consensus model of democracy, which may better represent the segmented society of 21st century Lebanon.
Publisher: Universitetet i Tromsø; University of Tromsø

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