Thoughts on war and violent conflicts at the beginning of the 21st century were marked by claims that there is a qualitative and quantitative shift in the nature of violent conflicts. According to these claims there is a significant change in the scope, methods, financing, organisation and intensity of contemporary warfare. Modern wars are supposedly decentralised and more chaotic. They represent the final consequences of global economic and political processes and differ from 'old wars' typically fought over territories and populations' identity. In addition, the boundaries between the state of war and peace are becoming increasingly blurred and the risk of significant collective violence has increased around the world. However, at the same time a growing number of empirical studies show that the 'new wars' do not in fact differ from the wars fought in the previous centuries nor that they are greater in number, intensity or civilian casualties.
The course will consequently deal with differences in the contemporary conceptualisation and research on war and peace, particularly in divided societies that have already experienced violent conflicts or have the potential to produce new conflicts. We encourage the participation of students and scholars in the social sciences, law and humanities and other fields and disciplines that study social phenomena such as divisions, cleavages, conflicts, borders, ethnicity and diversity.
This post/graduate course will be organized as a rigorous eight-day academic interdisciplinary program structured around lectures, workshops and conference-oriented presentations of scholarly research. The course participants will engage in active discussions of the theoretical, methodological and practical issues of research in divided societies. In addition, the course offers personal inter-cultural experience of students and faculty from other contexts in an unforgettable setting of a city that was itself the target of a destructive conflict.
Please note that all available HESP/OSI scholarships for this course have been granted to eligible candidates, based on the evaluation of the academic board.