Post-Personalism in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan

After Personalism: Rethinking Power Transfers in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan” (DOI: 10.1080/ 00472336.2020.1772853) is a new article by Luca Anceschi of Central & East European Studies at the University of Glasgow in Scotland.

The abstract states:

What happens to elites when the personalistic leader they supported for so long suddenly dies? This article tackles comparatively transitions out of first presidencies in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, presenting an analytical framework that seeks to explain why these transitions unfolded in relatively smooth fashion. The overall stability defining power transfer processes instigated by the non-violent death of personalistic rulers in both contexts is explained here through the intersection of three key factors: the regimes’ resort to succession practices consolidated in the Soviet era, the emergence of temporary forms of collective decision-making in both transitional contexts, and the implementation of de-personalisation strategies pursuing the obliteration of specific pockets of cadres but stopping short of wider regime re-organisation. The findings of this article contribute to broader debates on the politics of de-personalisation, while putting forward a comprehensive framework to analyse transitions out of personalism in and beyond post-Soviet Eurasia.

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