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Laws, landscapes and prophecy: the art of remaking regimes of lethal violence amongst the western Nuer and Dinka (South Sudan)

Pendle, Naomi Ruth (2017) Laws, landscapes and prophecy: the art of remaking regimes of lethal violence amongst the western Nuer and Dinka (South Sudan). PhD thesis, The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

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Identification Number: 10.21953/lse.y955vi6w47sn

Abstract

This thesis is a collection of ethnographic studies of ways in which governments and other public authorities amongst the western Dinka and Nuer (South Sudan) have directly or indirectly remade the moral boundaries of lethal violence during times of war and peace. The thesis goes beyond discussing the causes of specific national episodes of armed conflict in South Sudan but instead pays attention to the normative regimes of lethal violence that span across times of war and peace. I echo those who have challenged the assumption of a rupture between times of war and peace, and additionally assert that normative and legal regimes made during times of ‘peace’ can shape modes and patterns of war. The thesis argues that governments, chiefs and Nuer prophets have all tried to build their own authority through their governance of the moral, legal and spiritual consequences of lethal violence. Different public authorities have contested and coopted each other’s regimes. Governments, chiefs and Nuer prophets have played powerful but contrasting roles in interpreting and remaking the moral and legal limits of lethal violence. The thesis specifically looks at the examples of the remaking of landscapes and laws as ways in which moral boundaries have been reshaped and materially embedded. The doctorate focuses on the tumultuous 2005 – 2015 period, but also draws on histories dating back to the 19th Century.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2017 Naomi Ruth Pendle
Library of Congress subject classification: J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General)
Sets: Departments > International Development
Supervisor: Allen, Tim
URI: http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/3616

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