From Bombs to Banners?: The Decline of Wars and the Rise of Unarmed Uprisings in East Asia
2011 (English)In: Security Dialogue, ISSN 0967-0106, E-ISSN 1460-3640, Vol. 42, no 3, 219-237 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
One of the most important debates in the field of peace and conflict research concerns whether wars andarmed conflicts are declining over time. The region where this plays out most markedly is East Asia: havingsuffered some of the world’s most brutal wars in the period prior to 1979, the region has since witnessed anera of relative peacefulness. This article asks whether the decline in the level of war in the region reflects achange in the means used to pursue conflicts: are conflicts that previously were fought with arms increasinglymanifested through unarmed uprisings based on strategic nonviolent actions? Examining the empiricalpatterns of armed conflicts and unarmed uprisings in the region, the article shows that there has been asubstantial increase in the number of unarmed uprisings in East Asia that runs parallel with a decrease in theintensity and frequency of warfare. Yet, the article also shows that these nonviolent uprisings do not follow onfrom previous armed campaigns, and that armed and unarmed campaigns differ in terms of aims, nature andoutcome. Thus, the article concludes that there is little support for the hypothesis that those who formerlyused violence have shifted to new nonviolent, unarmed tactics, and that we are rather witnessing two parallel,unrelated processes. These insights call for an enlargement of the research agenda of the ‘East Asian peace’.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Sage Publications, 2011. Vol. 42, no 3, 219-237 p.
nonviolence, unarmed uprisings, war, violence, conflict
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Research subject Peace and Conflict Research
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-141913DOI: 10.1177/0967010611407105ISI: 000291677900001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-141913DiVA: diva2:386577
ProjectsEast Asia Peace