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Minority rights in Europe: from Westphalia to Helsinki

    • Published online: 17 April 2001

Sovereign insiders and minority outsiders

The ‘problem of minorities’, with its numerous implications for both international theory and practice, has been a significant issue in international society for centuries. It has constituted an ongoing friction between states, a pretext for separatism, irredentism and intervention, and a direct and indirect cause of local and general wars.Among the best works which examine various aspects of the ‘problem of minorities’ are the following: I. Bagley, General Principles and Problems in the International Protection of Minorities (Geneva, 1950); I. Claude, National Minorities: An International Problem (Cambridge, MA, 1955); G. Gotlieb, Nation Against State (New York, 1993); W. Kymlicka, Multicultural Citizenship (Oxford, 1995); J. Laponce, The Protection of Minorities (Berkeley, CA, 1960); C. Macartney, Nation States and National Minorities (London, 1934); J. Mayall, Nationalism and International Society (Cambridge, 1990); H. Miall (ed.), Minority Rights in Europe (London, 1994); D. Moynihan, Pandaemonium; Ethnicity in International Politics (Oxford, 1993); and P. Thornberry, International Law and the Rights of Minorities (Oxford, 1991). Why?

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I would like to thank William Wallace for his advice and encouragement as well as the anonymous reviewers for their insightful comments. An earlier version of this article was presented at the international theory panel of the British International Studies Conference, York, 19–21 December 1994.
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Review of International Studies
  • ISSN: 0260-2105
  • EISSN: 1469-9044
  • URL: /core/journals/review-of-international-studies
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