Recent years have seen a dramatic growth in research on the roles and experiences of civilians during civil conflict. This class explores three important and interconnected themes in this area: (1) the nature of contemporary forms of civil conflict and the use of violence; (2) the experiences of civilians in conflict zones; and (3) the responsibilities (and efforts) of domestic institutions and the international community to seek the protection of civilians in (and after) conflict. This class will read, analyze, and discuss both established works and cutting-edge research in these areas.
The first part of the semester focuses on how political institutions, government actors, rebel leaders, civilians and rank-and-file soldiers use violence and the intended and unintended effects of this violence.
The second explores civilian experiences in war. It asks why civilians are targeted, how civilian and soldier experiences often vary by gender, why sexual violence is used as a tool of war, and how children experience and are affected by violence.
The third and final part of the semester is spent analyzing the new and established roles of international military intervention, peacekeeping, and law in preventing violence against civilians.
This is a small seminar class focused on discussion and analysis. Over the course of the semester students prepare their own discussion questions, write critical reviews of selected works, and develop their own research agenda on a related topic. The class culminates with a poster session highlighting student research projects.
|Part 1||Using Violence|
|Week 1||Introduction, concepts|
|Week 2||Political institutions and violence|
|Week 3||The role of government actors|
|Week 4||The role of rebel leaders|
|Week 5||The role of the rank and file|
|Week 6||Using violence and its effects|
|Part 2||Civilian experiences|
|Week 7||Why target civilians?|
|Week 8||Gender and conflict|
|Week 9||Conflict and sexual violence|
|Week 10||Children and violence|
|Part 3||Preventing civilian violence|
|Week 11||International intervention and peacekeeping|
|Week 12||Domestic and international law|