Foto: Matthias Friel
Civil wars have become the most prevalent form of violent conflict in contemporary times. Why do people use violence to pursue political goals? What conditions are sufficiently dire – or inspiring – to make someone take up arms and risk his (or her) life as part of a rebel group? What are the political ad socio-economic consequences of civil wars? And what are the most effective ways to manage and ultimately pacify conflict and post-conflict environments? This course explores the domestic and international dynamics of civil wars and conflict resolution in a scientific and rigorous way. Throughout this semester, we will discuss, analyze, and critique a variety of arguments about the onset, duration, and termination of violent civil conflict that occurs between the state and non-state actors. The aim of this course is to provide an overview of different research approaches for the study of civil wars and to take a closer look at several intensively discussed factors in order to understand the complexities of violent conflicts.
This class will provide students with extensive exposure to the quantitative study of civil wars around the world and engage them in the rigorous, empirical analysis of multiple dimensions of contemporary civil conflict. We will start off by defining what constitutes a civil war and how this form of conflict is different from (or comprises) events such as international war, protests, riots, coups, genocide, and terrorism. We will then examine what factors influence the onset, duration, termination, and recurrence of civil wars. The second of the course will involve in-depth discussions of material on topics like the determinants of participation in armed conflict, the use of terrorism in civil wars, civilian impacts, external interventions and conflict management, and options for post-conflict peacebuilding. In the final part of the course, we apply these theoretical discussions in three case studies of the civil wars in Syria, Sierra Leone and El Salvador and conclude with reflections for future civil war research.
Barbara F. Walter. 2002. Committing to Peace: The Successful Settlement of Civil Wars. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Michael W. Doyle & Nicholas Sambanis. 2006. Making War and Building Peace: United Nations Peace Operations. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
T. David Mason & Sara McLaughlin Mitchell (eds.). 2016. What Do We Know About Civil Wars? Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield.
Caroline A. Hartzell & Matthew Hoddie. 2007. Crafting Peace: Power-sharing Institutions and the Negotiated Settlement of Civil Wars. University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press.
Roland Paris. 2004. At War’s End. Building Peace After Civil Conflict. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Monica Duffy Toft. 2010. Securing the Peace: the Durable Settlement of Civil Wars. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Patrick M. Regan 2002. Civil Wars and Foreign Powers: Outside Intervention in Intrastate Conflict. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
Stathis N. Kalyvas. 2006. The Logic of Violence in Civil War. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Jeremy M. Weinstein. 2007. Inside Rebellion: The Politics of Insurgent Violence. New York: Cambridge University Press.
The language of instruction is English.
Registration for this seminar will be through PULS during the official enrollment period. Please enroll by 17.04.2022. If there are more than 25 registrations, a decision on admission will be made after the first seminar session.
The examination includes an oral presentation and a final term paper. Please upload your term paper as a pdf file to Moodle in the designated session by 30.09.2022. A print version is not required.
Please note that the acceptance of your final examination is only possible with a valid PULS registration. If you wish to submit a term papers, please register for the module examination on PULS by 15.09.2022.
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