- The Oxford Handbooks of Political Science
- About the Contributors
- It Depends
- Why and How Philosophy Matters
- The Socialization of Epistemology
- Political Ontology
- Mind, Will, and Choice
- Theory, Fact, and Logic
- Why and How Psychology Matters
- Motivation and Emotion
- Social Preferences, <i>Homo Economicus</i>, and <i>Zoon Politikon</i>
- Frames and Their Consequences
- Memory, Individual and Collective
- Why and How Ideas Matter
- Detecting Ideas and Their Effects
- How Previous Ideas Affect Later Ideas
- How Ideas Affect Actions
- Mistaken Ideas and Their Effects
- Why and How Culture Matters
- How to Detect Culture and Its Effects
- Race, Ethnicity, Religion
- Language, Its Stakes, and Its Effects
- The Idea of Political Culture
- Why and How History Matters
- Historical Knowledge and Evidence
- Historical Context and Path Dependence
- Does History Repeat?
- The Present as History
- Why and How Place Matters
- Detecting the Significance of Place
- Space, Place, and Time
- Spaces and Places as Sites and Objects of Politics
- Uses of Local Knowledge
- Why and How Population Matters
- The Politics of Demography
- Politics and Mass Immigration
- Population Change, Urbanization, and Political Consolidation
- Population Composition as an Object of Political Struggle
- Why and How Technology Matters
- The Gender Politics of Technology
- Military Technologies and Politics
- Technology as a Site and Object of Politics
- Duchamp's Urinal: Who Says What's Rational When Things Get Tough?
- The Behavioral Revolution and the Remaking of Comparative Politics
- Name Index
- Subject Index
Abstract and Keywords
This article examines the conception of population composition as an object of political struggle. It acknowledges that census holds a powerful sway over political analysts and explains that census becomes a political battleground not due to vitiation of what should be a technical exercise, but rather because of its fundamental role in representing groups. It identifies the agents of category construction in census and describes the three models of linking state-recognized identity categories to political power and evaluates their application to Soviet ethnogenesis. It suggests that the decision to categorize the composition of a population along cultural markers, and the formulation of these categories are political choices and that the affirmation of an identity by an individual on the census, within the repertoire offered, is a matter of choice.
David I. Kertzer is Paul Dupee, Jr. University Professor of Social Science and Professor of Anthropology and Italian Studies at Brown University.
Dominique Arel is Associate Professor in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa.
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