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II. Civil War and State Failure

Below is a collection of useful readers and texts on civil war and state failure. Note: An asterisk (*) indicates texts appropriate for secondary school modules.

Influential scholarly books:

Bates, Robert H. 2001. Prosperity and Violence: The Political Economy of Development. New York: Norton.

Fanon, Frantz. 1963. Wretched of the Earth. New York: Grove Press.

Gurr, Ted Robert. 1970. Why Men Rebel. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Petersen, Roger. 2001. Resistance and Rebellion: Lessons from Eastern Europe. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Skocpol, Theda. 1979. States and Social Revolutions. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Toft, Monica Duffy. 2003. The Geography of Ethnic Violence. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Edited Volumes:

Bloom, Mia M. and Roy Licklider, eds. 2004. Living Together After Ethnic Killing: the Debate over Intervention, Secession and Irredentism. Special issue of Security Studies. 13 (4).

Chirot, Daniel and Martin Seligman, eds. 2001. Ethnopolitical Warfare. Washington, DC: APA Books.

Goldstone, Jack, ed. 2003. Revolutions: Theoretical, Comparative, and Historical Studies. New York: Thomas Wadsworth.

Lake, David A. and Donald Rothschild, eds. 1998. The International Spread of Ethnic Conflict. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Licklider, Roy, ed. 1993. Stopping the Killing: How Civil Wars End. New York: New York University Press.

Walter, Barbara and Jack Snyder, eds. 1999. Civil Wars, Insecurity, and Intervention. New York: Columbia University Press.

State-of-the-art Political Science Contributions

2003. Breaking the Conflict Trap. Washington: The World Bank.

Bates, Robert, Avner Grief and Smita Singh. 2002. "Organizing Violence." Journal of Conflict Resolution 46 (5): 599–628.

Bates, Robert, et al. 2003. Political Instability Task Force Report: Phase IV Findings. (Public release May 10, 2006.)

Collier, Paul and Anke Hoeffler. 2001. "Greed and Grievance in Civil War." World Bank Working Paper.

Collier, Paul and Nicholas Sambanis. 2005. Understanding Civil War: Evidence and Analysis (Africa). Washington: The World Bank.

Fearon, James and David Laitin. 1996. “Explaining Interethnic Cooperation.” American Political Science Review 90 (4): 715–735.

Fearon, James and David Laitin. 2000. “Violence and the Social Construction of Ethnic Identity.” International Organization 54 (4): 845–77.

Fearon, James and David Laitin. 2003. “Ethnicity, Insurgency, and Civil War.” American Political Science Review 97 (1): 75–90.

Fortna, Virginia Page. 2003. “Scraps of Paper? Agreements and the Durability of Peace.” International Organization 57 (2): 337–372.

Gates, Scott. 2002. “Recruitment and Allegiance: The Microfoundations of Rebellion.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 46: 111–130.

Grossman, H.I. 1991. “A General Equilibrium Model of Insurrections.” American Economic Review 81: 912–21.

Hovil, Lucy and Eric Werker. 2005. “Portrait of a Failed Rebellion: An account of rational, sub-optimal violence in western Uganda.” Rationality and Society 17(1): 5–34.

Humphreys, Macartan and Jeremy Weinstein. 2005. “Handling and Manhandling Civilians in Civil War: Determinants of the Strategies of Warring Factions.” Unpublished Manuscript, Columbia and Stanford Universities.

Kalyvas, Stathis. 2001. “'New’ and 'Old’ Wars: A Valid Distinction?” World Politics 54 (1): 99–118.

Keen, David. 1998. The Economic Functions of Civil Wars. Adelphi Paper no. 320. New York: Oxford University Press.

Kydd, Andrew and Barbara Walter. 2002. “Sabotaging the Peace: The Politics of Extremist Violence. International Organization 56 (2): 263–296.

Posen, Barry. 1993. “The Security Dilemma and Ethnic Conflict.” Survival 35 (1): 27–47.

Posner, Daniel N. 2004. “The Political Salience of Cultural Difference: Why Chewas and Tambukas Are Allies in Zambia and Adversaries in Malawi.” American Political Science Review 98 (4): 529–545.

Regan, Patrick M. 2002. “Third-Party Intervention and the Duration of Intrastate Conflicts.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 46 (1): 55-73.

Robinson, James and Daren Acemoglu. 2001. “A Theory of Political Transitions.” American Economic Review 91: 938–963.

Ross, Michael L. 2004. “How Do Natural Resources Influence Civil War? Evidence from Thirteen Cases.” International Organization 58 (1): 35–67.

Weinstein, Jeremy. 2005. “Resources and the Information Problem in Rebel Recruitment.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49: 598–624.

Wood, Elisabeth. 2004. Insurgent Collective Action and Civil War in El Salvador. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Information Sites Website of the Political Instability Task Force (PITF).  The PITF is a panel of a panel of scholars and methodologists that seeks to assess and explain the vulnerability of states around the world to political instability and state failure. Contains links to PITF articles and data. The site also provides links to other relevant data sources such as the Polity Project and Minorities at Risk Project.

Exemplary Syllabi

Kelly Greenhill. “Understanding Civil Wars: Internal Conflicts and International Responses.” Good mix of academic work and policy advocacy on civil wars and failed states. Undergraduate.

Macartan Humphreys and Jeremy Weinstein. “African Civil Wars in Comparative Perspective: A Research Seminar.” Provides a broad survey of the most promising research into African civil wars from an economic and political science perspective. Contains links to most publicly available datasets. Suitable for an advanced graduate course.

Monica Duffy Toft. “Civil Wars: Theory and Policy.” Another excellent mix of political science, economics, and policy-relevant work. Professional/Graduate.

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