Advanced Topics in Contemporary Violence and Conflict - SE878

Sorry, this module is not currently running in 2019-20.







This advanced, specialist module explores in greater depth critical topics in the anthropology of conflict. The module is designed to be team-taught by various members of staff with expertise on conflict, violence and criminality. Topics covered will vary from year to year to reflect their current research. Indicative topics might include violence, conflict and state-building; ethnic conflicts, human suffering and post-conflict recovery; corruption and organised crime; symbolic violence and economic oppression.


This module appears in:

Contact hours



Spring Term

Method of assessment

The module is assessed by 100% coursework.
Two short essays (500 words each) written in response to a reading chosen from the reading list, 20% each; one long essay (2000 words) relating to the content of the module, 40%; class participation, 20%

Indicative reading

Gupta, A. 2012. Red Tape: Bureaucracy, Structural Violence and Poverty in India. Durham; London: Duke University Press.
Volkov, V. 2002 Violent Entrepreneurs: The Use of Force in the Making of Russian Capitalism. London; Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
Blok, A. 1974 The Mafia of a Sicilian village, 1860-1960: A Study of Violent Peasant Entrepreneurs. Oxford: Blackwell
Das, Veena, Arthur Kleinman, Margaret Lock, Mamphela Ramphele & Pamela Reynolds. 2001. Remaking a World: Violence, Social Suffering, and Recovery. Berkeley, Los Angeles and London: University of California Press.
Farmer, Paul. 2003. Pathologies of Power. Health, Human Rights, and the New War on the Poor. Berkeley, Los Angeles and London: University of California Press.
Green, Linda. 1999. Fear as a way of life. Mayan widows in rural Guatemala. New York: Columbia University Press.
Halbwachs, Maurice. 1992 [1941]. On Collective Memory. Edited by L. A. Coser. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press.

Learning outcomes

1) Ability to use anthropological theories and perspectives to understand the roots and consequences of conflict, violence and criminality
2) Interpret key texts and performance in the anthropology of conflict and violence by locating them within appropriate cultural and historical contexts
3) Critically apply advanced anthropological theories and perspectives in the presentation of information and argument
4) Devise questions for research and study which are anthropologically informed
5) Perceive the way in which cultural assumptions may affect the opinions of others and oneself

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