INTR 391 Spring 2015 Insurgencies: Revolts, Revolutions, Wars of National Liberation, and Jihads

Cross Listed as ANTH391
We often tend to think of warfare in the classic terms described by Clausewitz: states waging armed conflict against other states using uniformed armed forces that are distinct from non-combatant civilian populations. Throughout history, however, we may also encounter many instances of asymmetric conflict within states, colonies, and other political entities, involving combatants who are often indistinguishable from the general population and whose objectives are often unlike those of states: Peasant revolts, revolutions, wars of independence or national liberation, and other forms of resistance and civil insurgency pit the relatively weak against the power of the state and may succeed because, to use Mao's metaphor, the insurgents move among the people like fish in water. The close relationship between insurgent fighters and the supporting population makes the social structure, social values, social institutions--in short, the culture--of the society particularly relevant to understanding the nature of a given asymmetric conflict. In this course we will use theoretical and analytical concepts from anthropology, sociology, history, and political philosophy to examine asymmetric conflicts of the twentieth century and the present day. The course will be divided into three parts: in the first we will explore some of the theoretical literature on violence and warfare as well as some of the basic literature on tribal and peasant society, peasant revolts, wars of national liberation, guerilla warfare, and insurgencies. The second part of the course will be devoted to presentations prepared by small groups of students on case studies, e.g., the Hukbalahap insurgency in the Philippines, the communist revolutions of China, Cuba, and Malaysia, wars of national liberation such as those in Algeria and Vietnam, and other ongoing civil conflicts such as the Palestinian intifadah and "ethnic cleansing" in the Balkans. The final portion of the course is devoted to an in-depth study of Iraq following the American invasion and to a consideration of the evolving nature of asymmetric conflict in a globalizing world.
Class Format: seminar
Requirements/Evaluation: class participation, two exams, research paper
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Prerequisites: none; open to first-year students
Enrollment Preference: Anthropology and Sociology majors
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Divisional Attributes: Division II
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Enrollment Limit: 30
Expected Enrollment: 20
Class Number: 3158
CLASSES ATTR INSTRUCTORS TIMES CLASS NUMBER ENRL CONSENT
INTR 391 - 01 (S) SEM Insurgencies Division 2: Social Studies Peter Just
TR 08:30 AM-09:45 AM 3158 Open
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