Supporters of former leading party VMRO-DPMNE occupy parliament after the Social democrats voted in a new parliament speaker in Skopje on April 27, 2017.

The quest for ethnic and religious tolerance

Managing Diversity

April 2017, Number 08.02

‘No man is an island,’ wrote English Catholic cleric and poet John Donne in the 16th century. Today, this is more evident than ever. Nowadays we live in the age of identity politics. According to social identity theory, we are inclined to define ourselves by certain objective measures such as ethnicity, religion, race, gender and sexual orientation. These measures define our place in the community and society in general and are liberating and restraining at the same time. Socio-demographic changes and globalization are not optional, but rather the reality of our past, present and future. In the globalized world, states and societies face increasing permeability and fluidity, resulting in a challenging quest to manage diversity.

Multiethnic states are now the norm; the traditional nation-state (a distinct national group corresponding to a territorial unit) has become almost eradicated in the melting pot of today’s world. Except for cases such as North Korea, it is now unrealistic to expect monoethnic countries and societies. An inability to reconcile the territorial integrity of the nation-state and a desire by minorities for cultural autonomy caused the failure of nation-states. If a nation-state doesn’t recognize minority rights and attacks a minority’s...”

Excerpt from Andreja Durdan, “Managing Diversity,” per Concordiam: Journal of European Security Defense Issues 8, No. 2, 2017: 30-35.

Andreja Durdan is an intelligence officer in the Security Intelligence Agency, Croatia. Previously, she worked in the Ministry of Interior. She is a 2014 graduate of the Marshall Center’s Program in Applied Security Studies and holds a master’s degree in economics from the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb, Croatia.

This article reflects the views of the author and are not necessarily the official policy of the United States, Germany, or any other governments.