Introduction to the special issue: In/civility in peace and conflict

Schild, Pascale (2023). Introduction to the special issue: In/civility in peace and conflict. Peacebuilding, 11(3), pp. 245-256. Taylor & Francis 10.1080/21647259.2023.2209399

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In this introduction to the special issue, we bring anthropological debates about civility into conversation with peace and conflict research on civil society peacebuilding. International peacebuilding has been widely criticised for its claims to being impartial and based entirely on technical expertise and, therefore, to acting outside politics, disguising processes of exclusion and hierarchies such as those between the global/local and the civil/uncivil. Extending from this critique, we propose civility as a conceptual lens to focus on the practices and norms aimed at promoting restraint and respect in violent conflict. Through this lens, we seek to examine the ambivalent notions and practices – often considered ‘the virtue’ – of civil society as manifested in public claims for decency, respect, peace and doing good. By (re-)drawing boundaries in society, these claims create possibilities for solidarity and peaceful politics across differences, but they often also (re-)produce conflict, violence and inequalities between people and groups.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of Art and Cultural Studies > Institute of Social Anthropology

UniBE Contributor:

Schild, Pascale


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology




Taylor & Francis




Pascale Schild

Date Deposited:

08 May 2023 14:04

Last Modified:

03 Sep 2023 02:50

Publisher DOI:



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