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Ritual and Region

The Invention of ASEAN

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 October 2018

Mathew Davies
Australian National University, Canberra


Why has ASEAN endured and why do members, many of whom remain comparatively weak and poor, continue to invest in the regional project? Existing answers, either that ASEAN is meaningless or that it has transformed regional affairs through the creation of shared values are both misplaced. Neither argument is empirically plausible. Instead, this Element argues that ASEAN has and continues to serve state interest through the creation of a shared ritual and symbolic framework. This framework has mitigated regional tension through the performance of regionalism, but has not fundamentally addressed the sources of that tension.
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Online ISBN: 9781108686785
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication: 29 November 2018
© Mathew Davies 2018

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Ritual and Region
  • Mathew Davies, Australian National University, Canberra
  • Online ISBN: 9781108686785
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Ritual and Region
  • Mathew Davies, Australian National University, Canberra
  • Online ISBN: 9781108686785
Available formats

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Ritual and Region
  • Mathew Davies, Australian National University, Canberra
  • Online ISBN: 9781108686785
Available formats