In the first part of the course we will approach the topic of conflicts in international politics from a broader perspective by asking why conflicts emerge and what the social functions and dynamics of conflicts are. We will also discuss different theories explaining the causes of conflicts in the international arena. Against this theoretical background we will in the second part study the empirical evolution of conflicts, the transformation of conflict types and the underlying dynamics, with a special focus on the role of violence. The third part of the course addresses the problem of conflict management. We will especially focus on different instruments of third-party intervention and finally pick up one crucial aspect in the transformation process from violence to peace: transitional justice. The overall aim of this course is to develop a first understanding of the causes and functions of conflicts in the international arena and to get an overview over this research field. Most of the theories and studies discussed are based in political science although we will also include psychological, sociological and economic perspectives.

Semester: ST 2022