Volume 37, Number 4, July 2005

//Volume 37, Number 4, July 2005

Volume 37, Number 4, July 2005

Melani Cammett, “Fat Cats and Self-Made Men: Globalization and the Paradoxes of Collective Action”

When and how do businesspeople act collectively? Manufacturers mobilized in Morocco but remained politically dormant in Tunisia in response to nearly identical incentives and challenges from global markets. New economic conditions created cleavages in the business class in both countries, but these cleavages were only politicized to the extent that producer groups mobilized. The ability to generate a cohesive class identity, which arose in response to perceived threats from other producer factions, was critical for successful business collective action. These findings call into question key assumptions in theories of collective action and introduce a new approach to globalization and domestic politics.

Catherine Boone, “State, Capital, and the Politics of Banking Reform in Sub-Saharan Africa”

Financial sector reform in sub-Saharan Africa differed cross-nationally in the 1990s. The differences are traceable in part to variations in the strength and autonomy of private capital in each country. One register of the differences is concentration and ownership structure in the commercial banking sector. Variation in banking structure in African countries can be analyzed according to a typology; each system tends to produce a characteristic pattern of banking sector reform (or nonreform). A variety of transitions to the market can be traced in Africa, and they are contributing to continuing differentiation across states.

Cédric Jourde, “'The President Is Coming to Visit!' Dramas and the Hijack of Democratization in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania”

Authoritarian renewal followed the initial phase of democratic reform in Africa in the early 1990s. Most studies of authoritarian restoration analyze the hijack of democratic transition in formal political institutions like elections, parliaments, and the judiciary. However, incumbent authoritarian elites also resort simultaneously to cultural and symbolic strategies. Cultural performances enacted by incumbent authoritarian elites, like presidential tours in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, contributed to the restoration of authoritarian rule by disseminating signals that strengthened ruling elites’ positions and weakened prodemocracy forces.

María Victoria Murillo, “Partisanship amidst Convergence: The Politics of Labor Reform in Latin America”

During the 1980s macroeconomic crises and globalization pressures brought Latin American governments, both conservative and populist, to implement market-oriented reforms. Despite policy convergence, sectoral policies, which concentrate their effects on core supporters but are not salient for the median voter, could still be used to demonstrate partisan policymaking. Labor-linked parties used labor market regulation to keep labor supporters when facing political uncertainty despite regional convergence toward labor market deregulation. Incumbent labor-linked parties used labor reforms to keep labor allies because their effects were concentrated on formal workers who were already organized and had previous partisan alliances but did not change the preferences of the median voter.

Sandra L. Suárez, “Does English Rule? Language Instruction and Economic Strategies in Singapore, Ireland, and Puerto Rico”

How do English language instruction policies relate to economic strategies geared toward export growth. Historically, economic pressures for English instruction were evident in Singapore, Ireland, and Puerto Rico, but language curricula have not been uniformly adapted to the requirements of export-led industrialization. Language curricula have been adopted as a result of dominant party consolidation, nation building, and interest group politics, as well as the implementation of an economic strategy for which English proficiency is an important component. Language policies have been adapted to the requirements of an export-oriented economic policy in different ways and to different degrees.

Review Article: A. James McAdams, “Internet Surveillance after September 11: Is the United States Becoming Great Britain?”

The war on terrorism has led the American government to make noteworthy changes in the balance it strikes between national security and the protection of personal privacy. These changes include a loosening of statutory constraints upon surveillance activities, a diminution of executive accountability, and a redefinition of the functions of agencies typically involved in intelligence gathering. This shift, while a serious cause of concern, has not yet undermined fundamental rights protections in the U.S. A comparison of internet surveillance policy in the U.S. and Great Britain is used to assess the arguments of five recent books about the USA Patriot Act.