Trust and Rule

Rightly fearing that unscrupulous rulers would break them up, seize their resources, or submit them to damaging forms of intervention, strong networks of trust such as kinship groups, clandestine religious sects, and trade diasporas have historically insulated themselves from political control by a variety of strategies. Drawing on a vast range of comparisons over time and space, Trust and Rule asks and answers how and with what consequences members of trust networks have evaded, compromised with, or even sought connections with political regimes. Since different forms of integration between trust networks produce authoritarian, theocratic, and democratic regimes, the book provides an essential background to the explanation of democratization and de-democratization.

• A new theory of trust and its place in democratization or de-democratization • Sure handed historical accounts • Careful, but often surprising comparisons


1. Relations of trust and distrust; 2. How and why trust networks work; 3. Transformations of trust networks; 4. Trust networks versus predators; 5. From segregation to integration; 6. Trust and democratization; 7. Future trust networks.