Partition (politics)
In politics
Political science
Political Science is a social science discipline concerned with the study of the state, government and politics. Aristotle defined it as the study of the state. It deals extensively with the theory and practice of politics, and the analysis of political systems and political behavior...

, a partition is a change of political border
Borders define geographic boundaries of political entities or legal jurisdictions, such as governments, sovereign states, federated states and other subnational entities. Some borders—such as a state's internal administrative borders, or inter-state borders within the Schengen Area—are open and...

s cutting through at least one territory considered a homeland
A homeland is the concept of the place to which an ethnic group holds a long history and a deep cultural association with —the country in which a particular national identity began. As a common noun, it simply connotes the country of one's origin...

 by some community
The term community has two distinct meanings:*a group of interacting people, possibly living in close proximity, and often refers to a group that shares some common values, and is attributed with social cohesion within a shared geographical location, generally in social units larger than a household...

. That change is done primarily by diplomatic means, and use of military
A military is an organization authorized by its greater society to use lethal force, usually including use of weapons, in defending its country by combating actual or perceived threats. The military may have additional functions of use to its greater society, such as advancing a political agenda e.g...

 force is negligible.

Common arguments for partitions include:
  • historicist
    Historicism is a mode of thinking that assigns a central and basic significance to a specific context, such as historical period, geographical place and local culture. As such it is in contrast to individualist theories of knowledges such as empiricism and rationalism, which neglect the role of...

     — that partition is inevitable, or already in progress
  • last resort — that partition should be pursued to avoid the worst outcomes (genocide
    Genocide is defined as "the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group", though what constitutes enough of a "part" to qualify as genocide has been subject to much debate by legal scholars...

     or large-scale ethnic expulsion), if all other means fail
  • cost-benefit — that partition offers a better prospect of conflict reduction than the if existing borders are not changed
  • better tomorrow — that partition will reduce current violence and conflict, and that the new more homogenized states will be more stable
  • rigorous end — heterogeneity leads to problems, hence homogeneous states should be the goal of any policy

Common arguments against include:
  • It disrupts functioning and traditional state entities
  • It creates enormous human suffering
  • It creates new grievances that could eventually lead to more deadly violence, such as the Korean
    Korean War
    The Korean War was a conventional war between South Korea, supported by the United Nations, and North Korea, supported by the People's Republic of China , with military material aid from the Soviet Union...

     and Vietnam
    Vietnam War
    The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

  • It prioritizes race and ethnicity to a level acceptable only to an apartheid regime
  • The international system is very reluctant to accept the idea of partition in deeply divided societies


Notable examples are: (See Category:Partition)
  • Partition of Africa
    Scramble for Africa
    The Scramble for Africa, also known as the Race for Africa or Partition of Africa was a process of invasion, occupation, colonization and annexation of African territory by European powers during the New Imperialism period, between 1881 and World War I in 1914...

     (Scramble for Africa), between 1881 and 1914.
  • Partition, multiple times, of the Roman Empire
    Roman Empire
    The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

     into the Eastern Roman Empire and the Western Roman Empire
    Western Roman Empire
    The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

    , following the Crisis of the Third Century
    Crisis of the Third Century
    The Crisis of the Third Century was a period in which the Roman Empire nearly collapsed under the combined pressures of invasion, civil war, plague, and economic depression...

  • Partition of Prussia by the Second Peace of Thorn in 1466 creating Royal Prussia
    Royal Prussia
    Royal Prussia was a Region of the Kingdom of Poland and of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth . Polish Prussia included Pomerelia, Chełmno Land , Malbork Voivodeship , Gdańsk , Toruń , and Elbląg . It is distinguished from Ducal Prussia...

    , and Duchy of Prussia in 1525
  • Partition of Catalonia
    Catalonia is an autonomous community in northeastern Spain, with the official status of a "nationality" of Spain. Catalonia comprises four provinces: Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, and Tarragona. Its capital and largest city is Barcelona. Catalonia covers an area of 32,114 km² and has an...

     by the Treaty of the Pyrenees
    Treaty of the Pyrenees
    The Treaty of the Pyrenees was signed to end the 1635 to 1659 war between France and Spain, a war that was initially a part of the wider Thirty Years' War. It was signed on Pheasant Island, a river island on the border between the two countries...

     in 1659: Northern Catalan territories (Roussillon
    Roussillon is one of the historical counties of the former Principality of Catalonia, corresponding roughly to the present-day southern French département of Pyrénées-Orientales...

    ) was given to France
    The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

     by Spain
    Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

  • In the 1757 Second Treaty of Versailles
    Treaty of Versailles (1757)
    The Treaty of Versailles was a diplomatic agreement signed between Austria and France at Versailles Palace on 1 May 1757 during the Seven Years' War. The agreement expanded on the First Treaty of Versailles from the previous year which had established the Franco-Austrian Alliance...

    , France agreed upon the partition of Prussia
  • Partition of the United States
    United States
    The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

     during the American Civil War
    American Civil War
    The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

  • Partition of Prussia in 1919
  • German occupation of Czechoslovakia
    German occupation of Czechoslovakia
    German occupation of Czechoslovakia began with the Nazi annexation of Czechoslovakia's northern and western border regions, known collectively as the Sudetenland, under terms outlined by the Munich Agreement. Nazi leader Adolf Hitler's pretext for this effort was the alleged privations suffered by...

     and Munich Agreement
    Munich Agreement
    The Munich Pact was an agreement permitting the Nazi German annexation of Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland. The Sudetenland were areas along Czech borders, mainly inhabited by ethnic Germans. The agreement was negotiated at a conference held in Munich, Germany, among the major powers of Europe without...

     of 1938
  • Partition and Elimination of East Prussia
    East Prussia
    East Prussia is the main part of the region of Prussia along the southeastern Baltic Coast from the 13th century to the end of World War II in May 1945. From 1772–1829 and 1878–1945, the Province of East Prussia was part of the German state of Prussia. The capital city was Königsberg.East Prussia...

     among People's Republic of Poland
    People's Republic of Poland
    The People's Republic of Poland was the official name of Poland from 1952 to 1990. Although the Soviet Union took control of the country immediately after the liberation from Nazi Germany in 1944, the name of the state was not changed until eight years later...

     and Soviet Union
    Soviet Union
    The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

  • Three Partitions of Luxembourg
    Partitions of Luxembourg
    There have been three Partitions of Luxembourg since 1659. Together, the three partitions reduced the territory of Luxembourg from 10,700 km² to the present-day area of 2,586 km² over a period of 240 years...

    , the last of which in 1839, that divided Luxembourg between France, Prussia, Belgium, and the independent Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
  • Three Partitions of Poland
    Partitions of Poland
    The Partitions of Poland or Partitions of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth took place in the second half of the 18th century and ended the existence of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, resulting in the elimination of sovereign Poland for 123 years...

     and Poland-Lithuania in the 18th, with the fourth one sometimes referring to events of 19th and 20th centuries
  • 1905 Partition of Bengal
    Partition of Bengal (1905)
    The decision of the Partition of Bengal was announced on 19 July 1905 by the Viceroy of India, Lord Curzon. The partition took effect on 16 October 1905...

     and 1947 Partition of Bengal
    Partition of Bengal (1947)
    The Partition of Bengal in 1947, part of the Partition of India, was a religiously based partition that divided the British Indian province of Bengal between India and Pakistan...

  • Partition of Tyrol
    German Tyrol
    German Tyrol is a historical region in the Alps now divided between Austria and Italy. It includes largely ethnic German areas of historical County of Tyrol: the Austrian state of Tyrol and the province of South Tyrol but not the largely Italian-speaking province of Trentino .-History:German...

     by the London Pact
    London Pact
    London Pact , or more correctly, the Treaty of London, 1915, was a secret pact between Italy and Triple Entente, signed in London on 26 April 1915 by the Kingdom of Italy, Great Britain, France and Russia....

     of 1915
  • Partition of the German Empire
    German Empire
    The German Empire refers to Germany during the "Second Reich" period from the unification of Germany and proclamation of Wilhelm I as German Emperor on 18 January 1871, to 1918, when it became a federal republic after defeat in World War I and the abdication of the Emperor, Wilhelm II.The German...

     in 1919 by the Treaty of Versailles
    Treaty of Versailles
    The Treaty of Versailles was one of the peace treaties at the end of World War I. It ended the state of war between Germany and the Allied Powers. It was signed on 28 June 1919, exactly five years after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. The other Central Powers on the German side of...

  • Partition of the Ottoman Empire
    Partitioning of the Ottoman Empire
    The Partitioning of the Ottoman Empire was a political event that occurred after World War I. The huge conglomeration of territories and peoples formerly ruled by the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire was divided into several new nations.The partitioning was planned from the early days of the war,...

  • Partition of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire in 1919 by the Treaty of St. Germain
  • Partition of Ireland
    Partition of Ireland
    The partition of Ireland was the division of the island of Ireland into two distinct territories, now Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland . Partition occurred when the British Parliament passed the Government of Ireland Act 1920...

     in 1920 into the independent Irish Free State and (British) Northern Ireland
  • Treaty of Kars
    Treaty of Kars
    The Treaty of Kars was a "friendship" treaty signed in Kars on October 13, 1921 and ratified in Yerevan on September 11 1922.Signatories included representatives from the Grand National Assembly of Turkey, which in 1923 would declare the Republic of Turkey, and also from Soviet Armenia, Soviet...

     of 1921, which partitioned Ottoman Armenia between the republic of Turkey and the then Soviet Union (Western and Eastern Armenia)
  • Partition of Germany
    Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

     and Berlin
    Berlin is the capital city of Germany and is one of the 16 states of Germany. With a population of 3.45 million people, Berlin is Germany's largest city. It is the second most populous city proper and the seventh most populous urban area in the European Union...

     after World War II, annexation of former eastern territories of Germany
  • Partition of Korea
    Division of Korea
    The division of Korea into North Korea and South Korea stems from the 1945 Allied victory in World War II, ending Japan's 35-year colonial rule of Korea. In a proposal opposed by nearly all Koreans, the United States and the Soviet Union agreed to temporarily occupy the country as a trusteeship...

     in 1945
  • 1947 UN Partition Plan
    1947 UN Partition Plan
    The United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine was created by the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine in 1947 to replace the British Mandate for Palestine with "Independent Arab and Jewish States" and a "Special International Regime for the City of Jerusalem" administered by the United...

     for Palestine (region); this partition was abortive, as the proposed Palestinian state
    Proposals for a Palestinian state
    Proposals for a Palestinian state currently refers to the proposed establishment of an independent state for the Palestinian people in Palestine on land that was occupied by Israel since the Six-Day War of 1967 and before by Egypt and by Jordan since 1949...

     was never formed; Israel
    The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

     took most of the territory, with some going to Transjordan
    The Emirate of Transjordan was a former Ottoman territory in the Southern Levant that was part of the British Mandate of Palestine...

     and Egypt
    Kingdom of Egypt
    The Kingdom of Egypt was the first modern Egyptian state, lasting from 1922 to 1953. The Kingdom was created in 1922 when the British government unilaterally ended its protectorate over Egypt, in place since 1914. Sultan Fuad I became the first king of the new state...

  • Partition of India
    Partition of India
    The Partition of India was the partition of British India on the basis of religious demographics that led to the creation of the sovereign states of the Dominion of Pakistan and the Union of India on 14 and 15...

     (colonial British India) in 1947 into the independent dominions (later republics) of India and Pakistan (which included modern-day Bangladesh)
  • Partition of Korea
    Division of Korea
    The division of Korea into North Korea and South Korea stems from the 1945 Allied victory in World War II, ending Japan's 35-year colonial rule of Korea. In a proposal opposed by nearly all Koreans, the United States and the Soviet Union agreed to temporarily occupy the country as a trusteeship...

     in 1953
  • Partition of Punjab
    Patiala and East Punjab States Union
    The Patiala and East Punjab States Union was a state of India from 1948-56. It was created by combining eight princely states: Patiala, Jind, Nabha, Kapurthala, Faridkot, Kalsia, Malerkotla and Nalagarh. The state was inaugurated on July 15, 1948 and formally became a state of India in 1950. The...

     in 1966 into the states of Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh
  • Partition of Pakistan
    Bangladesh Liberation War
    The Bangladesh Liberation War was an armed conflict pitting East Pakistan and India against West Pakistan. The war resulted in the secession of East Pakistan, which became the independent nation of Bangladesh....

     in 1971, when East Pakistan became the independent nation of Bangladesh after the Bangladesh Liberation War
  • Partition of Vietnam
    Partition of Vietnam
    The Partition of Vietnam was the establishment of the 17th parallel as the Vietnamese Demilitarized Zone in 1954, splitting Vietnam into halves after the First Indochina War.The Geneva Conference was held at the conclusion of the First Indochina War...

     in 1954
  • The hypothetical partition of the Canadian province of Quebec
    Partition of Quebec
    Partition in Quebec politics refers to the secession of regions of the province of Quebec, rather than to partitions in a strict political sense. It is usually discussed as a possibility in the event of Quebec secession from Canada...

  • Partition of Yugoslavia in the 1990's
  • Possible Partition of Kosovo
    Partition of Kosovo
    Partition of Kosovo is hypothetical future partition of the territory of Kosovo between Republic of Serbia and Republic of Kosovo. Partition was proposed several times, as the final solution for Kosovo status process...

     after disputed independence
    International reaction to the 2008 Kosovo declaration of independence
    Kosovo's declaration of independence from Serbia was enacted on Sunday, 17 February 2008 by the Assembly of Kosovo with a unanimous quorum. All 11 representatives of the Serb minority boycotted the proceedings...

     in 2008.
  • Partitions of China (See 瓜分中國)
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