Rioting for Representation

Rioting for Representation
Ethnic riots are a costly and all too common occurrence during political transitions in multi-ethnic settings. Why do ethnic riots occur in certain parts of a country and not others? How does violence eventually decline? Drawing on rich case studies and quantitative evidence from Indonesia between 1990 and 2012, this book argues that patterns of ethnic rioting are not inevitably driven by inter-group animosity, weakness of state capacity, or local demographic composition. Rather, local ethnic elites strategically use violence to leverage their demands for political inclusion during political transition and that violence eventually declines as these demands are accommodated. Toha breaks new ground in showing that particular political reforms—increased political competition, direct local elections, and local administrative units partitioning—in ethnically diverse contexts can ameliorate political exclusion and reduce overall levels of violence between groups.


Risa J. Toha


Cambridge University Press & Assessment



Publication date

1 Jan 2021 – 31 Dec 2021


Social Sciences


International Relations and Politics


Global Asia (Asia and other parts of the World)