MA Humanitarianism and Conflict Response / Course details
Year of entry: 2022
- View tabs
- View full page
Course unit details:
Peace and Social Agency, Security and Intervention: Theories and Practices
|Unit level||FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 1|
|Available as a free choice unit?||No|
In the light of the recent collapse and long-term stagnation of peace processes worldwide, this module investigates blockages to peace at the domestic and international level. For this purpose, the module concentrates on the key theoretical and conceptual constructs that can help us understand peace-related interventions (e.g. peacebuilding, peacekeeping, mediation in peace negotiations) and local peace agency in their wider geopolitical as well as structural context. The module will introduce students to key concepts and embed them in wider International Relations theory, placing emphasis on the critical exploration of ideas and structures. In keeping with the critical ethos that is associated with Peace and Conflict Studies in Manchester, strong emphasis will be placed on issues of power, agency and bottom-up approaches to peace. In this course, we will focus on both, the agency that people and communities have in building peace, and on questioning the peace that is rolled out for them as part of international intervention in their various forms. Different types of interventions will be critically discussed to highlight their limitations and the power relations that characterise them.
By the end of this course, students should be able:
- interrogate key concepts and theories in peace and conflict studies.
- consider the nature of power and agency in relation to peace, conflict and resistance.
- analyse the key blockages to peace as well as linkages between them.
- engage critically with relevant literature and important thinkers in Peace and Conflict Studies.
- comprehend the shortcomings and political implications of external interventions (e.g. peacekeeping, peace mediation, peacebuilding).
- consider the tensions and complementarities between bottom-up and top-down approaches to building peace.
- understand how the thinking in Peace and Conflict Studies has changed throughout its different generations.
- use the theoretical and conceptual knowledge acquired in this module as a foundation for the semester 2 core module that will look at research methodologies and case studies.
- demonstrate improved teamwork, writing, presentation and research skills.
Teaching and learning methods
The module will be delivered in ten two-hour blocks of teaching. In the first three seminars, the convener will introduce the underlying driving forces and revolutionary dynamics. As of week 4, students will be involved in the dissemination of knowledge through group presentations.
Method Weight Other 15% Written assignment (inc essay) 85%
Weighting within unit
A detailed weekly reading schedule is laid out in the handbook. The following are general texts that should give you an idea of the scope of the field:
- Richmond, OP and G. Visoka (2021) Peacebuilding, Statebuilding and Peace Formation (Oxford: Oxford University Press)
- Rambotham, O., T. Woodhouse and H. Miall (2016) Contemporary Conflict Resolution (London: Polity).
- Richmond, R., Pogodda, S. and J. Ramovic (2016) The Palgrave Handbook of Disciplinary and Regional Approaches to Peace (Houndmills: Palgrave)
- Shepherd, Laura J (2017) Gender, UN Peacebuilding and the Politics of Space: Locating Legitimacy (Oxford: Oxford University Press).
- UN (2016) Resolution 70/262. Review of the United Nations Peacebuilding Architecture (New York: United Nations).
Scheduled activity hours Seminars 20 Independent study hours Independent study 130
Staff member Role Sandra Pogodda Unit coordinator