The military versus democracy in Fiji: Problems for contemporary political development

Stephanie Lawson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In this chapter, the author's focus is on the notion of 'regime vulnerability' as applied to the civil institutions of government in Fiji, both before and after the 1987 coup. The author considers the past, present and future role of the military, with particular emphasis on its relationship with civilian authority.

The author clarifies 'regime vulnerability', especially in terms of the comparative strength or weakness of civil institutions. She also gives an overview of Fiji's colonial history and legacy before outlining the role of the military in Fiji.

In terms of future directions for politics in Fiji, the author examines the concepts of overt and covert regimes, and concludes by stating that democratic constitutionalist principles are unlikely to prevail in Fiji in the short term.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Military and Democracy in Asia and the Pacific
EditorsR. J. May, Viberto Selochan
Place of PublicationCanberra, ACT
PublisherANU E Press
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)1920942009
ISBN (Print)1920942017
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • civil-military relations
  • colonial government
  • regime
  • the state


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