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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Non-violence and civilian agency in communal war: evidence from Jos, Nigeria
Author:Krause, Jana
Year:2017
Periodical:African affairs: the journal of the Royal African Society (ISSN 1468-2621)
Volume:116
Issue:463
Pages:261-283
Language:English
Geographic term:Nigeria
Subjects:political violence
conflict prevention
leadership
Link:https://doi.org/10.1093/afraf/adw068
Abstract:Communal violence is one of the deadliest forms of political violence in Nigeria. Research has yet to identify and explain the variation in spread and intensity of violence 'within' communal conflicts. This article analyses violence and non-violence in two almost contiguous neighbourhoods located in the city of Jos in central Nigeria that share ethnic, religious, and socio-economic similarities. It shows that structural factors such as geography, demography, or intervention by security forces do not predict non-violence. Rather, preventing killings during communal conflicts was contingent on civilian agency such as leadership, social control over internal youth, and refusal to collaborate with external armed groups. Drawing on narrative interviews, the article explores motivations for violence prevention and finds that knowledge concerning the organization of violence and lived experience in conflict zones were important factors that gave leaders the ability and confidence to persuade mobilized men not to start killings. These findings have important implications for the protection of civilians in communal conflicts. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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