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The generalization of particularized trust : an assessment of Colombia's effort to monopolize the means of violence through the prism of a social trap Boesten, Jan

Abstract

This paper examines the relation between the politics of state formation and the accompanying appearance of social traps based on the example of Colombia. It shows that egregious exceptions to the rule of law - exemplified by the parapolitica and "false positives" scandals - are themselves a result of "social traps", which are generated by the generalization of particularized trust. The generalization of particularized trust entails the incorporation of a closed trust network in the effort of monopolizing the means of violence against internal insurgency.

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