2011 Summer School

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2011 SUMMER SCHOOL IN COMPARATIVE CONFLICT STUDIES

The 2011 Summer School successfully ended, with almost 40 participants 
from 15 countries world wide.

12-18 July, 2011 Faculty of Media and Communications (FMK), Belgrade 

 

2011 Summer School offered three courses:

International Intervention in a Globalised World

Dr. Maxine David

Course Description:
The fundamental organising principle in the international system has long been one of state sovereignty. Thus, states are considered to have authority over a defined and internationally recognised territory, protected from external intervening forces. The associated principle of non-intervention has been challenged in more recent times by successive interventions into the sovereign affairs of states by international organisations, notably the United Nations and NATO, as well as other states. In the early 2000s the international “community” adopted the principle of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), widely debated by reason of the obligations it places on states to protect the wellbeing of their citizens and the vulnerability of states to outside interventions when they fail to protect those citizens. As a result, it is reasonable to ask whether the principle of sovereignty has been superseded by the principle of human rights protection.
In this course, students will be introduced to the underpinning concepts and competing understandings of intervention in situations of conflict, state collapse, humanitarian and human rights emergencies. Students will learn to identify and deliver a critical analysis of those factors that shape international intervention and will apply this knowledge to a few of the case studies that have been particularly significant in respect of developing international-level responses to crises. 

Course Structure:
  • Introduction to key concepts: Sovereignty, human rights, intervention, responsibility
  • International Relations theories: What do different IR theories have to say about intervention? How much do they help our understanding of what actually happens?
  • Actors I: States and International Organisations
  • Actors II: The media, public opinion
  • Case Studies:

a. Northern Iraq 1999-2001.State interests and responsibilities: The role of perception and misperception in legitimising intervention.

b. Yugoslavia in the 1990s: “Humanitarian” Interventions?

c. Darfur 2005-9: Wherefore the responsibility to protect?

d. Burma 2008: Understanding human rights in environmental disasters

e. Libya 2011: The role of the public and media in shaping governmental responses

 

Under Occupation: turning points in Palestinian socio-political realities

Dr. Maram Masarwi

Course Description: 
The political changes that have occurred in Palestinian society since 1948 through the Al Aqsa Intifada suggest a number of critical turning points in the socio-political realities of the Palestinian people. The most important of these junctures is a strong sense of defeat felt by the Arab nation following the Six-Day War, which brought about the collapse of the pan-Arab vision and the emergence of the religious concepts that replaced this vision. In other words, the national discourse underwent a process of Islamization and, at the same time, the Islamic discourse underwent a process of nationalization. This dialectic accelerated the emergence of a coherent national collective and prepared it for the struggle for independence. During and after the first Intifada and the Al Aqsa Intifada, Palestinian society was deeply affected by these religious concepts. 
This course will explore the main aspects of Palestinian society under the Israeli occupation as well as the main dilemmas and challenges faced by the Palestinian people in their struggle for an independent state. We will examine the instruments that shaped a new strategy for coping with the Palestinian political reality. The issue of martyrdom- shaheedom, will also be interrogated as bringing together the theme of national revolutionary sacrifice with the theme of self-sacrifice present in Islam. The course will also investigate how the Al Aqsa Intifada created a new social-cultural reality that offered a way of coping with the occupation by idealizing the death and the “space of martyrdom”. The course will also examine the effects of the political project of the Palestinian state on gender relations in Palestinian society. 
The course is divided into four parts. The first part will offer a historical introduction to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Throughout this part we will explore the major turning points in the Palestinian –Israeli conflict. The second part will focus on social and political orientations and changes among the Palestinians who live under occupation. The third part is devoted to the link between religion and nationalism, and how they affected the state project. The last part will examine the relationship between the nature of the Palestinian political struggle and the position of women within that struggle.

Course Structure: 

Part 1: Historical background: 

  • The Israeli-Palestinian conflict and its major historical turning points. 

Part Two: Socio-political changes and realities 

  • The Palestinian uprising: political uprising or social –political uprising?

Part Three: "Politi-religization": religion and nationalism as shaping forces of the Palestinian struggle. 

  • Religious Meaning of the Shahid
  • Development and Cultivation of the Concept of the Shahid's 
  • Parents in the Context of Sacrifice and Bereavement

Part Four: gender relations in the Palestinian struggle
Women, Islam and the Palestinian struggle.

 

From the discourse of brotherhood and unity to the discourses of EU integration: the case of "transition" in Serbia

Dr. Jelisaveta Blagojević

Course Description: 
Since the time when Serbia was one of the six republics of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRJ), the country has been through very difficult cultural, political and ideological challenges and changes. While the dominant socialist ideology in former Yugoslavia, organized around Tito’s idea of “brotherhood and unity”, helped to pacify and diminish differences between various ethnic and religious groups, Serbian society during the period of the Milošević regime has deployed different ideological patterns characterized by national pride, territorial integrity, and the policy of “all Serbs in one country” politics. These ideas were brought together under the banner of securing national and cultural identity, as well as territorial integrity. 
In dominant political and ideological discourses, contemporary Serbian society is most often characterized as a society “in transition”, colloquially referred to as “Serbia after democratic changes”. In such discourses, everything in Serbia in the past 15 years is “in transition”: the justice system, the economy and culture, but also our lives, our freedoms and our rights. Our recent historical transexperience generally refers to the path from communism and socialism to capitalism and liberal democracy, recognized as synonymous with European Union (EU) integration. At the same time, while “transiting” from one ideology to another, Serbian society is carrying the heavy burden of recent historical events: wars, ethnic cleansing, isolation and the collapse of all institutions, among others. 

Course themes: 
The course will be organized around four concepts:
a) community; b) friend/enemy; c) minorities and d) popular culture. 
The aim of this course is to understand the transition from the dominant Yugoslav ideology to what came after in Serbia through the analysis of changes in the discourses that organize the four concepts above. Discussion will focus on Serbia as well as on comparisons with the other successor states of the former Yugoslavia. 

Course Structure: 

  • Background and introduction to the breakup of Yugoslavia 
  • Post-Milosevic Serbia 
  • Serbia in transition: community
  • Serbia in transition: concepts of friend/enemy 
  • Serbia in transition: minorities 
  • Serbia in transition: popular culture

 

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