Bridging State and Civil Society

Informal Organizations in Tajik/Afghan Badakhshan
Suzanne Levi-Sanchez

An unprecedented, rare study of Central Asian politics and their ramifications for the world


Bridging State and Civil Society provides an in-depth study of parts of Central Asia and Afghanistan that remain marginalized from the larger region. As such, the people have developed distinct ways of governing and surviving, sometimes in spite of the state and in part because of informal organizations. Suzanne Levi-Sanchez provides nine case studies, each an independent look at a particular informal organization, but each also part of a larger picture that helps the reader understand the importance and key role that informal organizations play for civil society and the state. Each case explores how and by what rules the informal organization operates and what roles it provides in local governance by exploring its structure and how it interacts with official state institutions, civil society, familial networks, and development organizations. As such, each chapter explores the concepts through a different lens while asking a deceptively simple question: What is the relationship between informal organizations and the state?

Suzanne Levi-Sanchez is Associate Professor in the National Security Affairs Department at United States Naval War College.

Praise / Awards

  • “This is a unique study, based on both scholarship and participant observation, of social and political organization and events in a part of the world that feels remote but is very important . . . a major contribution to the literature on state strength, organization of civil society, state-society relations, and pluralism.”
    —Don Van Atta, Fellow, Center for Slavic, Eurasian and East European Studies, University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill

  • “A treasure trove of rich information and insight into borderland informal organization in Central Asia of interest to regional specialists as well as those studying transnational informal and trafficking networks more broadly. It is rare to see this amount of detail and information drawn from such volatile areas.”
    —Chris Jasparro, Ph.D, and author of Wildlife Trafficking and Poaching: Contemporary Context and Dynamics for Security Cooperation and Military Assistance

Product Details

  • 360 pages.
  • 4 maps, 21 figures, 12 tables.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Ebook
  • 2021
  • Forthcoming
  • 978-0-472-12949-2

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  • $85.00 U.S.