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Ethnic Conflict

A Global Perspective

Stefan Wolff

Publication Date - July 2007

ISBN: 9780192805881

240 pages

In Stock

Retail Price to Students: $32.95

A trenchant analysis of the underlying causes of ethnic conflict around the world, from Ireland to Rwanda


Why is it that Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland have been in perpetual conflict for thirty years when they can live and prosper together elsewhere? Why was there a bloody civil war in Bosnia and Herzegovina when Croats, Serbs, and Muslims had lived peacefully side-by-side for decades? Why did nobody see and act upon the early warning signs of genocide in Rwanda that eventually killed close to a million people in a matter of weeks? What is it that makes Kashmir potentially worth a nuclear war between India and Pakistan?
In Ethnic Conflict, Stefan Wolff draws upon eye witness testimonies, reports by Human Rights organizations, theories of conflict and conflict management, and his own long experience in working to resolve ethnic conflict to offer compelling answers to these questions. In recent years hardly a day has gone by when ethnic conflict in some part of the world has not made headline news. The violence involved in these conflicts continues to destabilize entire regions, hamper social and economic development, and cause unimaginable human suffering. Wolff goes beyond superficial media coverage of these crises to illuminate the broad similarities between ethnic conflicts around the world and to engage the fundamental question underlying them all: why do nationalism and ethnicity still have such terrible power to turn neighbor against neighbor? Wolff also explores the crucial-and growing-links between ethnic conflict and other security challenges, such as terrorism and organized crime.
No issue is more pressing in the world today than the ongoing and seemingly intractable tragedy of ethnic conflict. Stefan Wolff's new book sheds vitally important new light on both the causes and the potential solutions to one of humanity's darkest behaviors.


  • The first accessible and comprehensive introduction to the origins, dynamics, and management of ethnic conflicts
  • Covers a broad range of ethnic conflicts in different parts of the world, highlighting both their similarities and their differences
  • Shows the links between ethnic conflict and other security challenges such as terrorism and organized crime
  • Incoporates eye-witness testimonies from Human Rights organizations and illuminates the tragic human dimension of ethnic conflict

About the Author(s)

Stefan Wolff is Professor of Political Science at the University of Nottingham , Visiting Professorial Lecturer at SAIS Bologna Center, and Senior Non-resident Research Associate at the European Centre for Minority Issues in Flensburg, Germany. He editor of the journal Ethnopolitics and and the author of Disputed Territories: The Transnational Dynamics of Ethnic Conflict, The German Question, and other books.

Table of Contents

    Introduction: Ethnopolitics: Conflict versus Cooperation
    1. The Human Dimension: Facts, Figures, and Stories of Ethnic Conflict
    2. Ethnicity and Nationalism
    3. What Causes Ethnic Conflicts?
    4. Who Fights in Ethnic Conflicts and How?
    5. Managing and Settling Ethnic Conflicts
    6. Post-conflict Reconstruction
    7. The Future of Ethnic Conflict: Possibilities and Probabilities

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