September 27, 2011

When the walls come crumbling down: Monarchy and Thai-style Democracy

The following is the extended introduction to my review of Saying the Unsayable: Monarchy and Democracy in Thailand, edited by Søren Ivarsson and Lotte Isager (2010) published by NIAS Press

Full reference Connors MK (2011) "When the walls come crumbling down: Monarchy and Thai-style Democracy," Journal of Contemporary Asia, 41, 4, pp. 657-673.


Some observers may think that the Year Zero for contemporary critiques of the Thai monarchy begins in 2006 with Paul Handley's biographical The King Never Smiles: A Biography of Thailand's Bhumibol Adulyadej (Handley, 2006) Because of a single publishing gesture, the reading public glimpsed the king as a man concerned/perplexed with the knots and polish of ruling and power amidst a courtly world of intrigue and military fatigues. Far from the images of sacred humility proffered by state and private agencies alike, the decidedly human account of King Bhumibol was as shocking as it was treacherous to those invested in the psychological panaceas and legitimating prop of a benevolent monarch; publication had to be stopped (the government tried) and the book was banned in Thailand (Hewison, 2008). In his review, Duncan McCargo (2007) noted the book's cathartic effect; in “saying the unsayable” Handley had offered a “re-imagining of Thailand's modern political history.”

Saying the Unsayable: Monarchy and Democracy in Thailand, edited by Søren Ivarsson and Lotte Isager (2010), takes up this challenge of re-imagining. The contributors offer engaging reflections and critique, departing from Handley's biographical focus to survey a broader political and cultural world that the monarchy inhabits. In his review, historian Chris Baker (2011) avers this is a “careful book which has nothing personal or strident, no whiff of revolt.” Radical pamphleteering it is not, but there is revolt in the fashioning of wide-ranging and well-grounded arguments that carefully mould the unsayable into the sayable. This approach has ensured the book remains on sale in Thailand, despite its challenge to monarchical myths.

Handley's explosive biography and its wall-crumbling (not yet tumbling) effect were not totally unprecedented. Kevin Hewison's (1997) book chapter “The Monarchy and Democratization” critically expounded what he described as the “Standard Total View” of the Thai Monarchy (STVTM). Hewison's ironic riff on Michael Vickery's term “Standard Total View” announced both a very political critique of an institution that aspires to transcendence and the presence of a cult ideology which few had cared to name. His piece also touched on the Crown Property Bureau (Hewison,1997), the monarchy's stance during the events of 1973 and 1976, and on the conservative nature of Bhumibol's political outlook
To simplify, in its original and controversial usage, Vickery meant by Standard Total View that analysts were creating a one-dimensional picture – the standard total view – of various phases of the genocide in Cambodia (1975-79) that traced the death toll to evil intentions by the Khmer Rouge to purge the nation of former regime elements, its sympathisers and “intellectuals” (Vickery, 1999; originally published in 1984).

Absent from such accounts were accident, imperialism, war and contingency and a forensic accounting of the actual death toll. At the heart of Vickery's critique was the place of evidence, argument and motive in the presentation of controversial moments of brutal social change. His motive in coining the phrase was to point out how flawed and totalising narratives become accepted as fact. Notwithstanding the merits or otherwise of Vickery's account of Cambodia, the application of the idea to the Thai case is clear – how did the Thai monarchy come to have such an elevated and, until recently, largely unquestioned position?
Ivarsson and Isager (2010) following Hewison, describe the Standard Total View of the Thai monarchy in the following terms: as a protector of tradition, the nation and democracy; as an egalitarian development king who modernises as he instructs governments to care for the welfare of his subjects; and as an institution as natural to Thailand's political and social culture as rice is to the Thai diet. Clearly, Hewison's piece on the Thai monarchy was very contrarian, ensuring a limited impact. There was no open political disenchantment propelling widespread dissemination, but it was translated for a Thai audience and reportedly read in the palace. The monarchy was left alone by more cautious writers on Thailand. Even Hewison's modest success in opening up inquiry was not enjoyed by earlier pioneers. As few as they were, such works were ignored, most notably, the now eagerly ploughed work of Christine Gray. Her research showed how Buddhist ritual and kingship “played a central role in advancing western capitalist ideologies and practices in Thailand” (Gray, 1986). Among other things, Gray brilliantly depicted the Thai-ification and legitimation of Sino-Thai capital and the naturalisation of capitalism in general by their articulation to monarchical prestige, mediated by rituals such as merit making by capitalist elites in royally-sponsored ceremonies. This also provided a means by which the king could build up the royal treasury (Gray, 1986). From an anthropological view, Gray (1986) noted that the growth of ritual in the Chakri court was also the growth of the king's naming prerogatives and his ability to structure perceptions about life, production and power in the world. This power was a right by virtue of his kingly position as among the highest interpreters of the Buddhist dharma (Gray, 1991: 44-5). Gray also revealed the contradictory notions of kingship at play in the royal court: a bricolage of Hindu/Buddhist prescriptions that are ever-adaptive to a changing world order and in which even the blood lineage of the monarch requires obscuration because of the democratic temper of the times. During her fieldwork Gray was granted privileged access to court and ceremonial functionaries and she repays the gift with fine scholarship.

As Gray was exploring these issues from the early 1980s to early 1990s, a strident re-hegemonising of the Thai social field around the “democratic” monarchy was underway. This was no less than an attempt to conceal and gloss the brutal massacre of October 1976 at Thammasat University. The elevated status of the monarch derives from this ideological work; its proximity being so recent one wonders at the mechanisms of its success, and the cultural residues on which that success drew. Until Handley explicitly drew attention to Gray's “underappreciated dissertation” (2006: xi), most academics ignored her powerful critique of the monarchy. This, perhaps, evinces an academic caution all too familiar to scholars who worked on Indonesia during the Suharto period or indeed on any region where academics either obscure critique or accept certain matters as untouchable. The caution was odd given that Thailand was then becoming valorised as the beacon of democracy in Southeast Asia (even as it was given the qualifier “semi”). That there was room for critical engagement is evident. Towards the end of his widely acclaimed Siam Mapped, Thongchai (1994) writes excoriatingly of the monarchy's symbolic violence in promoting Thainess. Pasuk and Baker (1995) provided scholarly interpretation of Thailand's broad transformation and, in the process, examined the role of the monarchy with critical balance. My own account of the monarchy explored its ideological rehabilitation after the trauma of 1976, showing the very constructed nature of the idea of “democracy with the king as head of state” and the many agencies of state that sent it out into the world (Connors, 2001, 2003) McCargo (2005) confronted the issue of palace politics head on in his “network monarchy” article, anticipating current debates. He proved it was possible to be very controversial. It is true that all of the above largely played the institution, not the person.

A number of works have used euphemisms such as “establishment” in English or “sathaban” (institution) in Thai to indicate who or what was being spoken about, enabling probing if cautious accounts of the palace. In the 1990s, some Thai scholars wrote newspaper columns that deliberately avoided using, as is customary, Bhumibol's full title and instead simply referred to him as king (kasat), indicating at least a disenchanted stance towards the monarchy. One such scholar explained to this author that he chose not to bother with royal language (the verbal prefixes and nouns that sound very affected) in a deliberate attempt to demystify the institution. He explained his good fortune in not getting into trouble on the basis that he was not important. On that point, the then not so well-known Giles Ji Ungphakorn, at the Eighth International Thai Studies Conference (2002) in the north-eastern city of Nakhon Phanom, said that he preferred a republican form of government over the current system. This clearly contravened the constitutional prohibition on advocating for any political system that challenged “democracy with the king as head of state.” No action was taken against him although over 300 people heard his comments. As his prominence grew as an anti-coup activist and after he attached himself to the red-shirt movement in 2008, he was hit with charges of lèse-majesté for his book A Coup for the Rich (Giles, 2007). In exile and feeling free of the suffocating caution required when writing about the monarchy, his work has grown more critical both of the monarchy and of those who want to make it a central issue: as he sees it, the military is the might behind the throne (see Walker and Farrelly, 2009). Such overtly political prose that reaches a sizeable audience and that aims at political action is clearly not allowed. And it is the latter, of course, which is the more dangerous. But before recent events forced open the window for critical commentary, it was clear that academically critical works could be published and that there was no reason for silence. The silence was in part born of fear – reasonably held by Thais – of excommunication; but the silence was also purposeful in the sense that it represented a willingness to see the political world the way the national elite fashioned it (see Ockey 2005), and a reactive belief that if the monarchy could not be resisted then it could be harnessed to progressive purpose and that claims could be made upon it. This reactive response colours the last two decades, and it is this more than the STV which is now under threat.

That the work under review is not obscure, oblique, or pollyannaish about the monarchy bespeaks a new time when popular and intra-elite struggle has punched a hole through the quasi-consensus surrounding the monarchy, expanding the space for a more honest reckoning of Thai history. That such a point has been reached can be seen in several respects. Most obviously, there are the relentless attacks on the Privy Council which began very soon after the coup d'état that ousted Thaksin Shinawatra in September 2006. Since 2007, predecessors of the anti-coup red-shirt movement called for Bhumibol to remove several appointees to the Privy Council, including its President General Prem Tinsulanonda, for his apparent role in the coup of 2006. In July 2007, this author saw protestors at Sanam Luang throw ping-pong balls and darts at a caricature of General Prem, drawn with pursed pink lips and an ornate earring garnishing the side of his face. This was a shocking sight to anyone acclimatised to the obsequious behaviours solicited/elicited by social superiors. It was in its own way no less than a public death of deference: the constitution states that appointment or removal from the Privy Council is the sole prerogative of the monarch, but the red shirts continue to call for Prem's removal.
Critical, if oblique, works have emerged or re-emerged in the Thai language, with broadly constitutionalist interpretations of the monarchy in competition with reactionary accounts that assume unrestricted royal power. For example, against the proliferation of commentary on the king's royal prerogatives (see Pramuan, 2005), in 2008 a law press published a seemingly innocuous title, Exposition on the Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand 1968 and Governing Regulations 1972: Regarding the King. In a preface that recounts law specific to the monarchy, Worajet (2008) demonstrates that the monarchy's ascension during the post-1976 era comes with greater control over its own affairs. Previously, amendment to the Palace Law of Succession (1924) followed procedures relevant to any constitutional amendment, but in the 1991, 1997 and 2007 constitutions amendment to the succession law is the sole prerogative of the palace. On this Worajet (2008) observes: “there has never been any expert explanation of whether this is a case of legislative royal prerogative or not, or whether [the palace prerogative to amend the succession law] …conforms to democracy and the principle of division of powers.” The book is a reprint of the work of Yut Seang-uthai, the influential jurist and Secretary General of the Council of State from 1953 to 1968. Yut pressed for a constitutionalist interpretation of the monarchy until his death in 1979, earning accusations of lèse-majesté along the way. Just to take one example, Yut (2008) writes “royal addresses through radio must be done in accordance with recommendations by the cabinet, as there must be someone responsible for the speeches.” Such an interpretation almost reads like sedition to the present mentality of prerogative royalists. The king's speeches are largely palace affairs and are not directed or approved by the government. Such limitation as proposed by Yut would certainly strip the king of an important source of legitimacy that comes from his now conventional right to chide governments in public, and to define and interpret situations as if above them. It would lead, practically, to a secular kingship devoid of a mechanism to be the “Great Definer” of the nation's fate.

If the king's prerogative to speak remains intact, the impact has been dulled by the relatively widespread disillusion with the monarchy since the 2006 coup. It is now not uncommon to hear highly critical comments about the monarchy which often stem from what some red-shirts describe as an “awakening” (ta-sawang) when the Queen attended the funeral of a member of the yellow-shirted People's Alliance for Democracy in October 2008. This was interpreted as an endorsement of the movement to overthrow the pro-Thaksin government of the time. As one red-shirt protester explained to this author in 2009 at a demonstration in Bangkok, “how can a mother chose between her sons?” Some protestors also refer to being “orphans.” These family references are a response to the widespread promotion by state agencies of the king and queen as father and mother of the nation. Explicit reference to Thailand's wealthiest conglomerate, the Crown Property Bureau, can also be heard in conversation.(The work of Porphant (2008) has been influential in opening up discussion on royal wealth).

This broad willingness to speak openly about the monarchy contrasts with the adulation or enforced silence that prevailed a decade ago. The shift is best exemplified by the curious case of the brash and brave Thai historian Somsak Jeamteerasakul whose writings on Thai web-boards and in academic papers constantly trash any imposed code of self or socially-expected censorship in a quest for truth about the monarchy's historical and contemporary role. His work predates the current growth of commentary, and it was only in early 2011 that police moved to investigate charges against him of lèse-majesté.

Royalists, that is to say various state agencies, the military, the People's Alliance for Democracy, and the governing Democrat Party have responded to this fragmenting consensus by stoking fears of a movement to overthrow the monarchy and building up state and social surveillance, a topic explored by pseudonymous Han Krittian (Chapter 8). There has been a wave of unprecedented and unmanageable lèse-majesté cases, as chronicled in David Streckfuss' Chapter 5. From an average of five cases per year between 1992 and 2004, the total number of cases tried between 2006 and 2008 jumped to 231 (see pp. 107, 123). Streckfuss (2011) reports that a police source suggests that in 2009 some 3000 potential cases were being investigated. The lèse-majesté cases should not simply be read as state persecution – the vagaries of the law allow individuals acting as concerned citizens to play a role in launching a lèse-majesté case, as Streckfuss carefully outlines. However, Streckfuss (2011)) notes that the failure of an enduring ideology around the monarchy is largely behind the spate of lèse-majesté cases. The monarchy does have a strong conservative and opportunistic social constituency and that constituency, now seeing the wall of the STV crumble, is groping for ways of patching it together before the debris gathers at their feet.

Fear mongering has become rife. Numerous books on an alleged movement to overthrow the monarchy have appeared in the last year. One book, running into multiple editions, features Thaksin dressed in royal regalia and claims that the republican movement is inspired by the overthrow of monarchies in France, Russia and, more recently, Nepal (Kongbannathikan, 2010). Similar claims of republican intent are made on leaflets and banners. For example, in the 2007 election, campaign leaflets were discreetly distributed saying that a vote for the pro-Thaksin People's Power Party was a threat to the monarchy. These were secretive, unsigned leaflets distributed in the north-east, probably by security forces. The Phum Jai Thai party, composed of elements that defected from the pro-Thaksin forces in late 2008 to enter into a coalition government with the Democrat Party, makes such allegations on banners in some provinces with the slogan: “Resist the new Thai state.” This is a slant against the alleged anti-monarchical leanings of the red-shirted United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship and its parliamentary ally the Pheu Thai Party. Moreover, the Phum Jai Thai Party's control of the powerful Interior Ministry has led to the setting up of pro-monarchy networks, partly in response to the “red-villages for democracy” that spread across the north-east in defiance of the crackdown of May 2010 (Somphok, 2011: 24-5). These villages also pledge loyalty to the “democracy with the king as head of state.” Even so, some members explicitly await the return of Thaksin as prime minister (Somphok, 2011: 24-5). While many international supporters of the red shirts enthuse about the movement's apparent anti-royalism, a glance at the red-shirt press over the last two years demonstrates that the more tabloid elements, such as Red News and Truth Today, have attempted to promote a positive relationship to royalism, seeing themselves as more credible protectors of the Crown. Mainstream red-shirt attacks have mostly concentrated on individuals within the so-called network monarchy, or more discretely, the Queen. There are occasional renditions of the royal anthem at red-shirt demonstrations, and the republican element in the movement is a small minority. The movement has put the STV up for scrutiny, but it has yet to crack it (for a more optimistic view, see Glassman, 2011).

As might be expected, Saying the Unsayable advances an alternative to the STV. That it does this with unusual turns of argument and the tensions that form between the chapters makes reading this book a novel experience rather than one of déjà vu. Saying the Unsayable does not merely record what people have long been saying – as some wrongly assert of Handley's The King Never Smiles. Saying the Unsayable goes beyond easy sneers at the monarchy, and offers insights into cultural, political and governmental processes.

The full review of the book appears at

Full references in the original

September 11, 2011

Thinking about authoritarianism in an ambivalent state

The full paper with tables, matrix and references may be read here

In the context of a fascinating surge in discussions on the nature of the Thai state at various forums, I reproduce a section of my attempt to think about unpacking the nature of authoritarianism in the ambivalent Thai state. The full paper may be read by clicking the link above. A much shorter version of this paper was published in Pacific Review as "Liberalism, Authoritarianism and the Politics of Decisionism". That version did not contain my attempt to think about authoritarian power.


This paper is an attempt to think through the nature of authoritarianism in Thailand by arguing that the focus of analysis should be on the exercise of political power, rather than regime form, in the context of the failure to settle on forms of legitimate power at the state and regime level. It first offers a way of thinking about authoritarianism, markers of its existence and, importantly in the Thai context, its articulation to liberalism. It advances this argument by noting the synchronicity of liberal and authoritarian modes of power across a range of regime forms in Thailand since 1976. Rather than situating authoritarianism in specific institutional sites (though it surely resides there – see Table 1), attention is given to the failure to establish and consolidate rules for the exercise of power as a consequence of Thailand’s specific ‘democratic transition’ that entailed a liberal and security settlement based on repression of progressive democratic forces, and the entrenchment of the monarchy at the centre of a national power bloc. Consequent to that settlement, competing groups of strategic elites in Thailand exist in a permanent state of insecurity and revert to authoritarian modes to secure their position, even as liberalism progressively deepens its reach.

Liberal and authoritarian regime framers, those forces that on balance support liberal or authoritarian forms of social order, are not exclusively identifiable in specific institutions, they are trans-institutional and trans-social class, and manifest in political exigencies. The contest and co-existence between the two currents reflects competing agendas for social order that are formed around different and changing coalitions of social forces. Since 1976 the complex pattern of forces that have come to occupy each current has shifted, their realignment contingent on a range of factors that come to bear on the task of social order and capital accumulation. As much as Hewison can speak of ‘contingent democrats’, to indicate the shifting position on democracy of the Thai bourgeoisie and the middle class, one may also speak of ‘contingent authoritarians’, to recognise those liberal regime framers who will utilise power, or condone its use, for the purposes of stemming power from below or in the struggle against authoritarian regime framers. Indeed, the contemporary situation (post-2006) is marked by a suspension of liberal modes of conduct at a national level, implicitly sanctioned by liberal regime framers, as different political forces compete to establish dominance in the Thai state, mobilising various resources and legitimating strategies.

Authoritarianism of power, not of regime.

Rather than viewing the 2006 coup and the resulting political fallout as ushering in new forms of authoritarianism in Thailand, this paper will speak of continuities and repetitive pathologies of state power, encased in the different regime forms since 1976. It will argue that the failure to settle the pattern of domination that lies at the heart of state structure requires that we think less of distinct regime forms (semi-democratic, democratic, authoritarian) and more of an ambivalent state of power in which shifting and differential patterns of liberalism, electoralism and authoritarianism have momentarily congealed as regimes.

This approach entails moving beyond the prevalent dichotomous models of regime form in democratization literature that posits authoritarian or post-totalitarian and democratic endpoints as opposite poles on a transition-continuum. As Thomas Carothers has argued, those regimes whose ‘transition’ to democracy has seemingly stalled may not have stalled at all, rather they are stubbornly squatting somewhere tangentially forked-off the linear continuum. The existence of hybrid regimes is now widely accepted: seemingly in temporary holding positions of their authoritarian leaders in “democratic transitions”, these “hybrids” have become embedded regime forms around which political behaviour is structured.

Moving beyond regime form at a macro level requires recognition that the yielding of power in state agencies, through political institutions, and in collaboration with business interests, may be remarkably similar whatever regime formally holds. This insight can often be lost as a consequence of giving too much credence to formal regime appellation. I have argued at length elsewhere that a significant force shaping the modern Thai state (understood both as an institutional apparatus concerned with the making and enforcing of public decisions and as a relationship of power that reaches into society) is liberalism, this despite the hold of the military and the bureaucracy over important state resources. I would extend my argument to note that within liberalism generally, and Thai liberalism specifically, it is possible to detect moments of authoritarianism that are not contradictory to the liberal project, but inhere in it (and this is so of liberalism in general). And, conversely, within authoritarian regimes one will find liberal moments of pluralism, intra-regime opposition and tolerance that would belie a harsh exterior. I would argue that it is these ambivalences (“contradictions” only if we accept ideal types) that can best illuminate recent Thai politics and its apparent authoritarian backsliding.

No one definition of an authoritarian regime will suffice to make sense of the existence of authoritarianism in Thailand. Rather than offer a definition, I offer, drawing from Linz, four angles from which authoritarianism may be examined and diagnosed. The angles are designed purely for heuristic purposes relevant to this paper, and do not claim universal relevance. For the purposes of understanding current Thai politics it seems to me that it is important to capture the spirit of authoritarianism as an approach to the exercise of power and the mechanisms to secure it, rather than as a specific type of regime. In this way, authoritarianism may be understood as present across many regime types.

An authoritarian state is one in which an apparatus of arbitrary power (what may be called an ensemble of dictate) exerts control, and often undirected influence, over physical life and/or a social field defined by imposed limited, hierarchical pluralism. Although patterned, the deployment of power is arbitrary by virtue of its relative unaccountability/un-responsibility, and though pluralism is sometimes controlled (it is always hierarchical) in contradistinction to ideal-type totalitarianism, it is not obliterated. An authoritarian state tends to exert coercive force in the extension of its quasi-legitimacy. To elaborate:

1. Un-responsible power/unrestricted restriction of freedoms.

An authoritarian state may be defined as that which, through internally ill-defined institutional patterns, exercises arbitrary and unaccountable power over the spheres of human existence and association, and which, by dictate, restricts free movement in those spheres. The former exercise of power concerns the derogation of the life of individuals and “natural” communities, while the latter entails the perversion of the relatively free range of collective political possibilities that might exist in an open public field. Both spheres are potentially subject to unrestrained power and power’s neglectful indifference, and are likely to mutate under both.

2. Universal claims.

When applied to national level state-society formations, which is what concerns us here, the term “authoritarianism” entails that on balance the exercise of power is illiberal and based on the authority of those who hold the centre (either formally or obscurely), and to those they delegate or defer. That authority is often legitimated by democratic, authoritative and mythic claims to universal representation, or some combination of all. Such universal claims are not matched by institutional arrangements. Those who exercise power at the centre are enabled by this legitimating claim to demobilize opposition through mechanisms of repression, cooption, and toleration, enduring strategies of depoliticisation, or even electoral mandates and parliamentary majorities.

3. Hierarchy of linkages.

Authoritarian states that are not edging towards totalitarian control will be differentially marked by vertical and sectoral linkages between different levels of power, mediated by actors who react to and shape the institutional features of the regime, according to prevailing incentive and disincentive patterns and the domain of intervention (health, education, industry policy etc.). This provides room to move. Authoritarian state institutions can articulate to regimes of various colours: bureaucratic-authoritarian, institutionalised one-party rule; competitive authoritarian, electoral populist, developmental liberal. While political typologists will rightly characterise regimes according to the dominant impulse at work in the centre (democratic, authoritarian, totalitarian etc) most regimes are complex multi-level systems of considerable institutional overlap; different and even contradictory impulses may be found within and across their respective state levels. An authoritarian state, in any particular regime form, may be, in restricted domains, articulated to a liberal imperative.

4. Propensity to coercion.

The deployment of coercive force is not unique to the authoritarian state, but it does have a marked propensity to coerce under the logic of exclusion by which it operates. Authoritarian states are rarely wholly legitimate ones. They tend to work on the principle of a dual exclusion. Firstly, there is the exclusion of the dissident or oppositional forces that are subject to significant constitutional/legal and extra-legal pressures in the conduct of their affairs. At best, it is the power of bureaucratic and technical coercion that is used to frustrate the formation of oppositional blocs or agendas. At worse, violence is employed. Secondly, there is is the exclusion of some social element by virtue of which the national citizenry may be formed over and over again. Authoritarian states - shaped as bureaucratic authoritarian regimes, as formally democratic regimes, as military regimes - are apt to communicate exclusion by public or hidden coercive measures extending from control to violence. In such a state, when resources, power or status are at stake the possibility of extra-legal coercion or violence is ever present, and shapes decisions. Authoritarianism gives free rein to a politics of fear.

This loose matrix of four features may be used to propose that while individual actions may be labelled authoritarian - as might particular policies, decisions, and ideologies - authoritarianism only emerges as an ensemble of dictate when on average a state’s organization of power over the social body it claims to represent, and its actions on it, are un-responsible and coercive by direction or consequence. To speak of “averages” allows that in any ensemble of dictate, particular instances of sub-regime liberalism are entertained and may be functional to the enduring nature of authoritarianism. It is also possible to speak of an apparatus of dictate in regard to sub-regime levels, much the same as Schmitter suggested that in looking at democratic consolidation a better picture was available by paying attention to the multiple sites in which different structures of behaviour were processed in relations between the state and society; these he called “partial regimes”.