THE idea of Pakistan stands riddled with tensions. Initiated by a small group of select Urdu-speaking Muslims who envisioned a unified Islamic state, today Pakistan suffers the divisive forces of various separatist movements and religious fundamentalism. A small, entrenched elite continue to dominate the country's corridors of power and democratic forces and legal institutions remain weak. But despite these seemingly insurmountable problems, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan continues to endure. The Pakistan Paradox is the definitive history of democracy in Pakistan and its survival despite ethnic strife, Islamism and deep-seated elitism.