This chapter recaps the core arguments, highlights the contributions of the book and discusses the final implications. One of these implications is to take the next step in peace and conflict studies. This means that if the study of resistance is an important part of a critical project that seeks to provide a more nuanced, realistic and critical account of peacebuilding, consolidating this turn by offering a solid account of resistance is a necessary step towards that project.
Everyday resistance, peacebuilding and state-making addresses debates on liberal peace and the policies of peacebuilding through a theoretical and empirical study of resistance in peacebuilding contexts. Examining the case of ‘Africa’s World War’ in the DRC, it locates resistance in the experiences of war, peacebuilding and state-making by exploring discourses, violence and everyday forms of survival as acts that attempt to challenge or mitigate such experiences. The analysis of resistance offers a possibility to bring the historical and sociological aspects of both peacebuilding and the case of the DRC, providing new nuanced understanding of these processes and the particular case.
This chapter examines violent resistance through the actions of Mai Mai militias and the ways the civilian population relate to them. This is primarily illustrated through the experiences related by interviews undertaken with combatants from Mai Mai militias in South Kivu, including Yakutumba and Raia Mutumboki. In the context of Eastern DRC, armed resistance links with other forms of resistance in its struggle against the effects of an increased militarisation of rural authority and worsened conditions of living. For rural popular classes these effects are largely seen as benefiting the economic and security interests of Congolese and Rwandan elites, and not as realising their aspirations for land, dignified living and political participation.
This chapter examines the case of ‘Africa’s World War’ in historical and regional perspective, identifying the different conflicting visions of order that coexist in the region, and giving the necessary background to the international peacebuilding strategies.
This chapter explains the three main purposes of the book and introduces its approach to resistance, peacebuilding and ‘Africa’s World War’. It focuses on analysing the accounts of resistance in peace and conflict studies, showing that they have ultimately focused on hybridity, missing an important opportunity to theorise resistance. The chapter also identifies important limitations in existing accounts, suggesting a closer use of the everyday framework as an alternative.
This chapter offers the theoretical framework for the sociological analysis of peacebuilding. Its aim is to set two core arguments of the book: firstly that peacebuilding processes have a plural, improvised and contradictory nature; and secondly that resistance is rooted in the coercive and extractive practices of war and state-making and not in an international-local contention. This does not try to demonise peacebuilding and romanticise resistance – quite the opposite – the sociological approach highlights the continuous transformations and contestations that actors and processes in a ‘post-war’ setting go through.
This chapter develops the framework of resistance. It defines everyday resistance as the practices of individuals and collectives in a subordinated position to mitigate or deny the claims made by elites and the effects of domination, while advancing their own agenda. The chapter proposes a categorisation of two different practices following different levels of engagement against authority claims: claim-regarding acts (tax evasion against tax levy, mockery of authorities’ claims to deference) and self-regarding acts (subversion of peacebuilding vocabulary to further peasant agendas, taking over the delivery of social services and goods changing with it modes of social organisation and political order). This gradation improves the everyday framework by including different practices and going beyond the dichotomies in the resistance literature around intentionality, violence and non-violence, and direct and indirect practices.
This conclusion presents some closing thoughts on the concepts discussed in this book. The book describes the Israeli policies of population management, surveillance and political control. In 1958, a decade after the state's establishment, a comprehensive plan of governance was laid down. Its principles continued, with some elaborations and insertions, to constitute the basis of Israeli policy towards the Palestinian minority. The evolvement of various aspects of Palestinians' lives in Israel could be viewed as a history of state power-driven governance strategies and resistance by Palestinians. Moreover, the majority of the Druze population has been reluctant to join Palestinian organizations. Indeed, many factors besides the historical backdrop were adversely related to the official Israeli discourse and policy guidelines. Some of these variables were general, such as the subjective images of the world that human beings hold and their resistance to imposed categorizations.
This chapter describes the role that state power has played, through deliberate planning and direct action, in engineering a social order where 'ethnic' categories have been presented as the central or the only form of identification for Palestinians. This constructed order is premised on two representations of the Palestinians: as non-Jews and as a collection of minorities. In 1920, 'the Intelligence Office' of the Zionist Executive's political department in Palestine laid down a plan to manipulate the differences and stir up conflicts among Palestinians. To many Palestinians, the causes for suspicion of the Druze were real, given the tasks entrusted to Druze soldiers. The highlighting of the Druze distinction had already begun in 1948 with one of the first acts of distinguishing the Druze from the Muslims.
In the autumn of 1948, while the eventful war was drawing to an end, David Ben-Gurion, who led the organized Jewish community, the Yishuv, to what has been described in the media and history books as a miraculous victory. Beyond the contingencies of the first elections, the question regarding the existence of a Palestinian minority in Israel needed thorough evaluation. Indeed, various meetings took place throughout the next three years, 1949 to 1952, with the participation of leading politicians and Arabists. MK Zalman Aran raised two points: the first, on the Arab leadership, a focal point in the emerging Israeli discourse. The second, regarding the representations and the stereotyping of Palestinians in Israeli society and media, an issue which would be disregarded for several decades. Yitzhak Ben-Zvi, a politician and Arabist and later the second President, highlighted certain aspects of the Israeli discourse, particularly with regard to demography.