Edited by Léo-Paul Dana
Chapter 20: A Critical Investigation of the Protestant Ethic on a Divided Island
* Godfrey Baldacchino and Léo-Paul Dana INTRODUCTION: BASIC COMPARISONS AND CONTRASTS ON A DIVIDED ISLAND The world is full of islands; but only very rarely are islands divided between different jurisdictions: it is as if to prove that geographic boundedness is naturally meant to be run as a single administrative unit. In fact, there are currently only 11 cases of islands where bounded geography must share political fragmentation amongst two or three sovereign state jurisdictions. They include Borneo, Sebatik Island (off Borneo), Cuba (if one counts Guantánamo Bay as a distinct, though anomalous, jurisdiction), Cyprus, Usedom/Uznam, Hispaniola, Ireland, New Guinea, Timor, Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego and Saint-Martin/Sint Maarten (Royle, 2001, pp. 150–51). These islands offer interesting and rare opportunities to undertake comparative analysis of salient features, when many other intervening variables can be plausibly considered to be held constant. Relevant examples of such a methodology are Dana (1995b) and Diamond (2005), who undertake an insightful critique of differential environmental policy and its effects on Hispaniola, comparing and contrasting the policies of governments on Haiti with those of the adjoining Dominican Republic. The island of St Martin (comprised of Dutch Sint Maarten and French Saint Martin) is the smallest of these island mavericks, and has been formally partitioned since 1648: the world’s smallest land mass ever to be shared by two separate governments, each of which operates in a shifting, often tense, sub-national relationship with a much larger, remote and ultimately benign European state. Dutch Sint Maarten...
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