Beyond Liberal Peacebuilding : A Critical Exploration of the Local Turn book cover
1st Edition

Beyond Liberal Peacebuilding
A Critical Exploration of the Local Turn

ISBN 9781138670327
Published June 7, 2017 by Routledge
226 Pages

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Book Description

This book examines the logic behind the shifts and paradigm changes within the scholarship on peacebuilding.

In particular, the book is concerned with examining if, and how, these shifts have significantly altered how we think about peacebuilding beyond the ‘liberal peacebuilding’ paradigm. To do so, the book engages with the logic of critique that has led to the emergence of different theoretical approaches to peacebuilding, from hands-on institutionalisation, to the ‘local turn’. It uses the case of Kosovo to understand how a lessons-learnt approach facilitated the shift towards more invasive and intrusive forms of peacebuilding first. However, it is also crucial to understanding the recent local turn, as the rise of local ownership discourses in Kosovo is fundamentally tied to the critiques of extensive international missions, and the associated resistance and marginalisation of local agency. The book examines the implications of the framing of ‘everyday’ agency in order to assess the extent to which these bottom-up approaches have been able to by-pass the problems attributed to the liberal peace approach. It argues that despite its critical and radical intentions, the local turn retains certain foundational modernist and positivist qualities that have so far characterised the very mainstream approaches these critiques claim to transcend.

This book will be of much interest to students of peacebuilding, statebuilding, peace and conflict studies, security studies and International Relations in general. 

Table of Contents

Introduction: A Genealogy of Bottom-up Peace-building in the Age of Non-linearity

1. From Liberalisation to Institutionalisation: The Birth of the Critical Turn in Peace-building

2. The Problematisation of the ‘Liberal Peace’ and the End of Top-down Peace-building

3. Reflections on Kosovo: Shifting Discourses and Paradigms of Peace-building

4. What ‘Local’ in Kosovo? Exploring the Plurality of Kosovo’s local Agency

5. The ‘Emancipatory’ Local Turn? The Limits and Paradoxes of the Local Turn’s Normative Project of Re-conceptualisation6. The ‘Uncritical’ Turn: Between Modernity and Non-linearity

Conclusion: Life after Critique?

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Elisa Randazzo is Teaching Fellow in Security Studies at University College London and holds a PhD from the University of Westminster, UK.