Graduation Year

2016

Degree

M.A.

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Degree Granting Department

Government and International Affairs

Major Professor

Bernd Reiter, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Rachel May, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Johnhenry Gonzalez, Ph.D.

Keywords

Corruption, Foreign Affairs, Law and Reality, New Public Diplomacy, Patronage, Soft Power

Abstract

This research analyzes why diplomacy is failing in the Dominican Republic. In this thesis, I describe how Dominicans construct their foreign affairs, and the limitations that diplomacy has had in the country. In order to achieve these goals, I have analyzed official documents such as the 2013 and 2015 payrolls of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and legal documents including Article 146 from the Constitution, Organic Law 314 from 1964, and the Protocol of Transparency and Institutions. I argue that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Dominican Republic lacks seriousness and is characterized by the following variables: (1) patronage, (2) corruption, and (3) the systematic violation of Dominican law. The thesis emphasizes how these variables have had a tremendous impact on the exercise of diplomacy. The research analyzes the reaction of the Dominican state and its citizens and how the nation responds to criticisms by the international community. Dominican citizens think that the opinion of international media is a campaign against their country. The implications of this false public perception is an intense nationalism, and the government encourages this. The true problem, as this thesis demonstrates, is institutional weakness. The government uses intense and widespread nationalism to hide institutional weakness and state corruption. After exploring this dialogue between the government, citizens and international media, I move forward framing concepts such as soft power and new public diplomacy to reinforce the importance of listening to foreign publics. In addition I explain why the country needs to change the traditional approach to foreign affairs. The adoption of a new public diplomacy is required to establish credibility and the integration between state, citizens and international publics.

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