Thinking about Peace Research in 21st century Latin America

The idea for this special issue originated from the Latin American Research Group (LARG) of Peace Studies at the University of Bradford. The Group was initiated and is run by PhD researchers, working on different aspects of peace and conflict issues in Latin America. With the forthcoming publication the group would like to initiate a debate beyond the boundaries of our institution on what such a perspective can add to research on Latin America.

 

With the end of military dictatorships in the Southern Cone and the signing of peace accords after Central American civil wars, most conflicts in Latin America were assumed to belong to the past. Consequently, the region has been overlooked by peace research. Nevertheless, in many countries of the region violence has only further escalated in the last 30 years. Countries such as Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Mexico are now considered to be some of the most violent countries in the world. Fuelling both violent conflict and structural injustice is economic inequality together with impunity, lack of rule of law, and continuing human rights abuses. These issues prompted various theoretical explanations. But a Peace Studies perspective that challenged prevalent definitions of war, conflict and peace is missing from these explanations.

 

Critical and innovative contributions are invited on distinct Peace Studies perspectives into issues impacting the region. Peace Studies, here, is understood as a multidisciplinary field that explores and understands conflict and its structural issues. Submission, accepted only in English, should contribute to raising new awareness of continuing and new conflicts in the region. At the same time, options to overcome conflicts could be analysed, and examples of encouraging work for peace may be presented. Young researchers and practitioners are particularly invited to submit academic articles, fieldwork reports, and book reviews. Examples of thematic aspects include:

 

– Regional development and conflict resolution/prevention

– Peacebuilding and political systems

– Critical theories and concepts of Peace Research applied to Latin America (e.g. structural violence, positive peace, conflict transformation, power and empowerment)

– The role of the State in the reproduction of violence

– Peace, restorative justice, and reconciliation

– Economic inequality and social (in)justice

– Civil society and social mobilisation

– The impact of conflict on societies (focussing on areas such as gender, ethnicity, and race)

 

Please send your submissions as per issue deadlines to editor@peacestudiesjournal.org.uk. Follow the ‘notes to contributors’ on the journal website for guidance and instructions. Please include a correspondence address and email address. Manuscripts and Disks cannot be returned.