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Theophanous, Andreas

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Cyprus Mail - Cyprus | 16/03/2008

The limitations of ethnic nationalism in Cyprus

Andreas Theophanous, professor of Political Economy at the University of Nicosia, sees themes directly related to several aspects of the Cyprus question in an article by Jerry Z.Muller in the American journal Foreign Affairs, entitled 'Us and Them, The Enduring Power of Ethnic Nationalism'. Theophanous notes that "federal models which are founded exclusively on the premise of ethnonationalism have a higher probability of failure than success. Indeed if we examine the recent experiences of the Balkans and of countries that are in fact in the heart of Europe (the former Czechoslovakia and Belgium) this hypothesis is confirmed. On the other hand, federal models that respect ethnic communities as well as individual rights, while revolving around the concept of civic nationalism and a common core value system, have greater chances of success. ... We need to be very critical of any plan for Cyprus formulated exclusively on the premises of ethnonationalism."

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