Political Economy of Violence, Conflict and Development (Online Module)

Key information

Module overview

This module provides a grounding in analytical approaches to the political economy of violence, conflict and development by discussing empirical trends, difficulties of data collection and the importance of categorization and boundaries to matters of violence. Foundational theories on conflict and violence including gender perspectives, debates about the origins of human violence (anthropological, historical, psychological sources of violence) and the role of violence in historical change will considered. Against this background, the course explores how development theory has treated violence and conflict at different times before focusing on competing contemporary theories and claims about the causes and dynamics of conflict. The focus next shifts to the structures and manifestations of violence including themes related to boundaries, war economies, inequality, land and the environment. Next students will explore different facets of intervening in violent conflict including humanitarian aid, conflict resolution and reconstruction. The course ends on the links between war/violence, and knowledge production, discourses and ethics, with a focus on terrorism and the war on terror and the ethical challenges of conducting research on violence.

All modules are subject to availability and are subject to change from session to session.

Suggested reading

Parfitt, Trevor, (2013), “Modalities of Violence in Development: structural or contingent, mythic or divine?” Third World Quarterly, 34(7): 1175-119;

Fox, Sean & Hoelscher, Kristian (2012), “Political order, development and social violence,” Journal of Peace Research, 49(3): 431-444.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules