The Core Assumptions Of The Transitional Paradigm

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The “transition paradigm” was considered to be a trend in seven different regions barring North America and Oceania that changed the political landscape of the world. It was an instantaneous shift from authoritarian or totalitarian regime toward more liberal and democratic form of governance. Consequentially, there was a global democratic trend in the last quarter of the twentieth century, and courtesy of American political scientist, Samuel Huntington, this trend was widely recognized as the “third wave” of democracy by many political observers in the Western world. The purpose of this paper is to examine the core assumptions of the transitional paradigm, its underlying problems that modifies its understanding, the static persistence of the transitional paradigm, and the better way of describing the political change in transitional states. There are five core assumptions that define the transition paradigm. The first one is an umbrella for all the others, which is any nations moving away from authoritarian rule can be considered a nation in transition toward democratic form of governance. In the first half of the 1990s, when political shift was on the rise in many parts of the world, not only policy makers and analysts but also academics started to treat and explain trends of ongoing movement from an authoritarian regime to a democratic governance in different nations across the world as a “transitional country”. Nearly 100 nations in different parts of the world, mainly
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