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Democratization and the Construction of Class Cleavages in Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia, 1992-2019

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  • Amory Gethin

    (WIL - World Inequality Lab, PSE - Paris School of Economics - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)

  • Thanasak Jenmana

    (WIL - World Inequality Lab, PSE - Paris School of Economics - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)

Abstract

This paper analyzes how democratization in Southeast Asia has led to the politicization of social and economic inequalities since the 1990s. Drawing on political attitudes surveys, we document how historical legacies, the structure of inequality, and institutional dynamics contributed to differentially structure political cleavages in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines. Ethnic inequalities in Malaysia and regional inequalities in Thailand played a key role in fostering the emergence of strong class divides in these two countries. In Indonesia, by contrast, the rise of new parties mainly used as political vehicles to support their leaders has eroded pre-existing religious and socioeconomic cleavages. The Philippines' highly unstable party system led to a third trajectory, whereby class divides have been strong, but have lacked the conditions required for their institutionalization and stabilization over time. We are grateful to Clara Martínez-Toledano, Thomas Piketty, Dirk Tomsa, and Andreas Ufen for their useful comments.

Suggested Citation

  • Amory Gethin & Thanasak Jenmana, 2021. "Democratization and the Construction of Class Cleavages in Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia, 1992-2019," Working Papers halshs-03215872, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-03215872
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://shs.hal.science/halshs-03215872
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Amory Gethin & Marc Morgan, 2021. "Democracy and the Politicization of Inequality in Brazil, 1989-2018," Working Papers halshs-03165718, HAL.
    2. Carmen Durrer de La Sota & Amory Gethin, 2021. "Inequality, Identity, and the Structure of Political Cleavages in South Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, 1996-2016," PSE Working Papers halshs-03165716, HAL.
    3. Jules Baleyte & Amory Gethin & Yajna Govind & Thomas Piketty, 2020. "Social Inequalities and the Politicization of Ethnic Cleavages in Botswana, Ghana, Nigeria, and Senegal, 1999-2019," PSE Working Papers halshs-03022210, HAL.
    4. Amory Gethin, 2020. "Extreme Inequality and the Structure of Political Cleavages in South Africa, 1994-2019," World Inequality Lab Working Papers halshs-03022282, HAL.
    5. Muhammed Abdul Khalid & Li Yang, 2019. "Income Inequality and Ethnic Cleavages in Malaysia: Evidence from Distributional National Accounts (1984-2014)," World Inequality Lab Working Papers hal-02876992, HAL.
    6. Amory Gethin, & Sultan Mehmood & Thomas Piketty, 2020. "Social Inequality and the Dynamics of Political and Ethnolinguistic Divides in Pakistan, 1970-2018," Working Papers halshs-03022253, HAL.
    7. Muhammed Abdul Khalid & Li Yang, 2019. "Income Inequality and Ethnic Cleavages in Malaysia: Evidence from Distributional National Accounts (1984-2014)," Working Papers hal-02876992, HAL.
    8. Thanasak Jenmana, 2018. "Democratisation and the Emergence of Class Conflicts: Income Inequality in Thailand, 2001-2016," Working Papers hal-02878146, HAL.
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    Cited by:

    1. Amory Gethin, 2020. "Extreme Inequality and the Structure of Political Cleavages in South Africa, 1994-2019," Working Papers halshs-03022282, HAL.
    2. Amory Gethin, & Sultan Mehmood & Thomas Piketty, 2020. "Social Inequality and the Dynamics of Political and Ethnolinguistic Divides in Pakistan, 1970-2018," Working Papers halshs-03022253, HAL.
    3. Carmen Durrer de La Sota & Amory Gethin, 2021. "Inequality, Identity, and the Structure of Political Cleavages in South Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, 1996-2016," Working Papers halshs-03165716, HAL.

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