Date of Award

8-2013

Degree Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Political Science, International Development, and International Affairs

Committee Chair

Robert Pauly

Committee Chair Department

Political Science, International Development, and International Affairs

Committee Member 2

Tom Lansford

Committee Member 2 Department

Political Science, International Development, and International Affairs

Committee Member 3

Joseph St. Marie

Committee Member 3 Department

Political Science, International Development, and International Affairs

Abstract

The theory of Democratic Peace suggests that democracies are unlikely to wage war on one another, yet it spends little time actually defining what democracies are. Research on the theory of Democratic Peace suggests that the theory only applies to mature democracies, but how is maturity determined? The criteria used by multiple scholars is needed to defend the theory from particular challenges such as the Cenepa Valley War, but even with such defenses, the criteria omits how a state treats women and racial minorities. These omissions become clear when one examines how scholars treat the United States of America. This thesis will assert that the criteria for determining a democracy's maturity is incomplete and requires revision.

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