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Civil War in Syria
Mobilization and Competing Social Orders

$84.99 (P)

Part of Problems of International Politics

  • Date Published: February 2018
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108420808

$ 84.99 (P)

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About the Authors
  • In 2011, hundreds of thousands of Syrians marched peacefully to demand democratic reforms. Within months, repression forced them to take arms and set up their own institutions. Two years later, the inclusive nature of the opposition had collapsed, and the PKK and radical jihadist groups rose to prominence. In just a few years, Syria turned into a full-scale civil war involving major regional and world powers. How has the war affected Syrian society? How does the fragmentation of Syria transform social and sectarian hierarchies? How does the war economy work in a country divided between the regime, the insurgency, the PKK and the Islamic State? Written by authors who have previously worked on the Iraqi, Afghan, Kurd, Libyan and Congolese armed conflicts, it includes extensive interviews and direct observations. A unique book, which combines rare field experience of the Syrian conflict with new theoretical insights on the dynamics of civil wars.

    • The only field-based academic account of the Syrian conflict. It provides first-hand testimonials and ethnographic depiction that allows access to the reality of the war
    • A detailed analysis, unavailable elsewhere, of the governance of the insurgency, providing the only comprehensive analysis of the civil war, from the peaceful mobilization to the rise and fall of the Islamic State
    • Through comparative research, it enables readers to better understand the dynamics of other civil wars
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Civil War in Syria is one of the very few fieldwork-based studies produced by Western academics on the topic. It provides unique insight into the Syrian war, including fascinating analyses of early revolutionary institutions that were subsequently destroyed by the combined efforts of loyalist forces and Jihadi groups. A genuinely scholarly endeavour, it also presents provocative theoretical arguments that will considerably enrich the growing field of comparative research on civil wars.' Thomas Pierret, University of Edinburgh

    'This book skillfully draws on a large number of interviews, many of them conducted inside Syria, to paint a rich and fascinating picture of life and political authority in rebel-held Syria. It documents attempt to construct some element of governance in rebel areas of Syria and the uneven struggle between militant jihadist groups with access to funding and weapons (especially Jabhat al-Nusra and ISIS) and less well-supported groups … an interesting and revealing study.' David Keen, London School of Economics and Political Science

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    Product details

    • Date Published: February 2018
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108420808
    • length: 346 pages
    • dimensions: 236 x 157 x 22 mm
    • weight: 0.6kg
    • contains: 7 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Prolegomena: for a sociological approach to civil wars
    Part I. Genesis of a Revolution:
    1. The al-Assad system
    2. A revolution of anonyms
    3. The path to civil war
    Part II. Revolutionary Institutions:
    4. The building of military capital
    5. Administering the revolution
    6. Mobilization outside Syria
    Part III. The Fragmentation of the Iinsurrection:
    7. The crisis internationalizes
    8. The Kurds and the PKK
    9. The Islamization of the insurgency
    10. The caliphate
    Part IV. A Society at War
    11. The variations of social capital
    12. The economy for war
    13. New identity regimes

  • Authors

    Adam Baczko, EHESS, Paris
    Adam Baczko is a Ph.D. candidate in Political Science at the School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS, Paris). His research focuses on the exercise of justice by armed groups and its political implications, with a particular focus on Afghanistan. He has carried out fieldwork in Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq and Syria.

    Gilles Dorronsoro, Universite Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne
    Gilles Dorronsoro is Professor of Political Science at Pantheon Sorbonne University and Senior fellow at the Institut Universitaire de France. He has researched civil wars throughout his career, making significant contributions through his books on Afghanistan, Turkey and Syria. Amongst his publications is Revolution unending. Afghanistan, 1979 to the Present (2005).

    Arthur Quesnay, Universite Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne
    Arthur Quesnay is a Ph.D. candidate in Political Science at the Pantheon-Sorbonne University. His research centres on the political dynamics of the sectarian conflicts in Iraq, where he conducted extensive fieldwork since 2009. In a comparative perspective, he also carried out fieldwork in Libya (2011–2012) and Syria (2012–2016) with insurgent groups.

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