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Unsettled States, Disputed Lands: Britain and Ireland, France and Algeria, Israel and the West Bank-Gaza (The Wilder House Series in Politics, History and Culture) Paperback – February 23, 1995

ISBN-13: 978-0801480881 ISBN-10: 0801480884

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Product Details

  • Series: The Wilder House Series in Politics, History and Culture
  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press (February 23, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801480884
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801480881
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,230,377 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Lustick is a distinguished professor at the University of Pennsylvania who has published several works on Israel. In this significant scholarly book, he expands his analysis of Israel to include the French colonial experience in Algeria and the British experience in Ireland. Using these three case studies, Lustick formulates a theory of state expansion and contraction that moves beyond the ideas of states being fixed in their borders and expanding through imperial conquest, or contracting through a cost-benefit calculation of the burdens of imperial control. He argues instead that there are stages of expansion and contraction that move across critical thresholds, which have greater or lesser impact on the regimes or states, institutions, values, and elites. Lustick assesses Ireland, Algeria, and Palestine in terms of this theory, providing a most informative analysis. His work will be of significant value to students of comparative politics. Highly recommended for academic history and political science collections.
- Richard B. Finnegan, Stonehill Coll., North Easton, Mass.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"In a major study that moves between path-breaking theorizing and analysis that is relevant to today's headlines, the author examines the process by which states expand and contract. . . . He develops a useful model of state expansion and contraction, focusing on how the issue of incorporating outlying territories is dealt with in the political arena. . . . While written before the recent Israeli-PLO agreement, this book has been made more, not less, timely by events that could only be guessed at when the author was writing this stimulating, often difficult, but ultimately very rewarding study."—Foreign Affairs

"Ian Lustick . . . has written a valuable study concerning the changing relationship of Britain to Ireland (1834-1922); France to Algeria (1936-62) and Israel to the West Bank/Gaza (since 1967). This richly detailed and thoroughly documented book can be read on a number of different levels and therefore has much to offer to a wide variety of audiences."—Robert Bookmiller, Middle East Policy

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Mitchell on November 2, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an excellent example of applied case studies for the purpose of model and theory building. Lustick, an Israel politics specialist, looks at the attempts to resolve the status of Ireland in the 19th and early 20th centuries and Algeria in the period between 1945 and 1962. He tells the story with historical narrative but chops it into segments to fit the model that he builds so that the two cases can be compared. He then applies the conclusions of the model to Israel and the occupied territories and has a chapter telling the story of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute since the British mandate with the concentration on the period since 1967. This is a must read for all those interested in looking at the obstacles that must be overcome before Israel will withdraw from the territories and the conflict will be resolved. As the book was written in the early 1990s it does not include coverage of the Oslo process or the unilateral Israeli disengagement from Gaza in 2005.

I personally have read much on the Irish case as background to Northern Ireland, and found Lustick's account to be both accurate and compelling. His recreation of the Algerian events from 1958-61 was largely new to me, but I also believe in its accuracy and narrative power.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Shalom Freedman HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on September 17, 2013
Format: Paperback
This attempt to trace the transformation of states with special focus on their distintegration opens with a biased look at the situation in Gaza. Lustig's entire career is marked by a strong animus against Israel and this prejudice is apparent in the opening of the work. His analyses on other areas of conflict are also informed by a radical Left outlook. There is however background information to be sifted on a wide range of global conflicts, and if this can be cherry- picked wisely perhaps something of value can be gained from skimming the work.
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