In 2012, a wave of violence swept through the Central African Republic as Seleka rebels clashed with anti-Balaka militias. In the face of seemingly senseless bloodshed, journalists, politicians, and scholars struggled to account for the conflict's origins. In this first comprehensive account of the violence, Louisa Lombard argues that the conflict was more than a straightforward religious clash between Christians and Muslims. Instead, she traces the roots of the conflict to fears of spiritual insecurity and a social breakdown that drove inter-communal violence. Placing the uprising within its broader social, cultural, and historical context , Lombard reveals the complicated roles played by marginalized rural youths, local political leaders, and the global community in sustaining the conflict, and she offers an urgent corrective to our perceptions of this little-understood country, making a compelling case for international leaders to rethink their approach to resolving the conflict.
Making Sense of the Central African Republic by Tatiana Carayannis (Editor); Laurence D. Wohlers (Contribution by); Louisa Lombard (Editor); Ledio Cakaj (Contribution by); Ned Dalby (Contribution by); Faouzi Kilembe (Contribution by); Roland Marchal (Contribution by); Nathaniel Olin (Contribution by); Enrica Picco (Contribution by); Stephen W. Smith (Contribution by)
Publication Date: 2015-08-15
Despite its position at the center of a tumultuous region that has drawn substantial international attention and intervention over the decades, the Central African Republic is often overlooked when discussions turn to questions of postcolonial development, democracy, and change in Africa. This book seeks to remedy that oversight, bringing together the foremost experts on the Central African Republic to offer the first in-depth analysis of the nation's recent history of rebellion and instability. Gathering contributions from nearly every scholar and international policy maker who has written on the Central African Republic in recent years, the book presents a close look at the two major coups of the past twenty years, the successes and failures of attempts at international intervention, the ongoing series of UN and regional peacekeeping efforts, and the potential for peaceful, democratic change in the nation's future.