1st Edition

Child Security in Asia The Impact of Armed Conflict in Cambodia and Myanmar

By Cecilia Jacob Copyright 2014
    232 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Millions of children around the world are affected by conflict, and the enduring aftermath of war in post-conflict societies. This book reflects on the implications of children’s insecurity for governments and the international humanitarian community by drawing on original field research in post-conflict Cambodia and in Burma’s eastern conflict zones.

    The book examines the way that politics and discourses of security and child protection have further marginalised rather than enhanced the protection of children. In Cambodia, threats from trafficking, exploitative labour, and high levels of domestic and social violence challenge the government and the international humanitarian community to respond to the new human security terrain that is the legacy of three decades of political violence. Burma has endured over 60 years of insurgency and civil conflict in ethnic minority states, significantly affecting children who are recruited into armies, killed, maimed or tortured, and displaced.

    Analysing the theoretical and practical challenges faced in addressing children’s security in global politics, the book offers a novel framework for responding to the politics of protection that is at the heart of this crucial issue. It is a useful contribution to studies on Asian Politics and International Relations and Security.

    Introduction 1. Childhood, Security and Protection: Concepts and Theoretical Approach 2. Locating Children in Global Politics: A Political Sociological Approach 3. Conceptualising Child Security: Rights, Agency, Participation and Protection 4. Power, Protection and the Discourse of Security in Cambodia 5. Post-Conflict Governance and Child Protection in Cambodia 6. Conflict, Militarization and Displacement: Child Insecurity in Myanmar 7. Responding to Child Insecurity in Myanmar and the Borderlands: The Protection Gap 8. Conclusion: The Politics of Protecting Children and Implications for Security Analysis


    Cecilia Jacob is Visiting Fellow and Lecturer in the Department of Political and Social Change at the Australian National University. Her research interests include the politics of civilian protection, critical security and children, with a focus on South and Southeast Asia.

    "This too is a welcome contribution inasmuch as it serves as a goad to security scholars to take up lines of inquiry too long neglected by the field... This book stands as an important contribution and essential reading for anyone trying to make sense of what it means to ask about children and youth in Security Studies and what is at stake when we do so."
    J. Marshall Beier, McMaster University

    "Reading this book brings home the reality of the plight of children in conflict zones around the world. The current situation in Syria, in particular, presents a real and alarming example where the rights of children and their security and their protection are threatened. Jacob’s book is well worth a read for those interested in how we should be thinking about these complex but important issues."
    Dr Mhairi Cowden, Australian Institute of International Affairs