chapter  9
18 Pages

Civil Society and Conditions of Peace

At the present juncture of history, the traditionally separate debates about civil society and conditions of peace are sometimes run together. This conflation occurs in a period of deep political and economic change, complicating efforts to understand what is involved. Furthermore, the idea of civil society in particular is infused with normative considerations. An additional complication stems from an erosion of what has long been considered a distinction between domestic and international spheres of action. Debates about these matters are not confined to academic halls and conferences of intellectuals; they form an important component of discourse in contemporary politics both within countries and across the international system. Thus any treatment requires attention not just to the ideas at stake but also to the context in which power is distributed and exercised in political arenas.