1st Edition

The International Politics of Mass Atrocities
The Case of Darfur

ISBN 9780415559034
Published February 1, 2010 by Routledge
288 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations

USD $56.95

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Book Description

The ongoing crisis in Darfur, Sudan has stimulated a huge amount of political and academic interest across the world. The crisis has been both reflective and constitutive of key areas of contestation and change within contemporary international society.

This book examines the crisis in Darfur as a case study of some of the wider debates currently taking place within International Relations theory. Using the conceptual framework developed by English School theorists, specifically their concept of international society and the related idea of "good international citizenship", this book examines a wide range of issues: foreign policy analysis, theories of norm diffusion, international organizations, peace operations, international criminal justice and war law, the causes and nature of contemporary warfare, and the international relations of Africa.

Making an important contribution to the debate about the meaning and limits of international society, this book will be of interest to students and scholars international relations theory, international security, foreign policy, international organizations, human rights, African politics, genocide studies and international law.

Table of Contents

Introduction: International Society and the Crisis in Darfur Paul D. Williams and David R. Black  Part 1: Regional Politics  1. The Government of Sudan and the Darfurian Armed Groups I.D.F. and Munzoul Assal  2. Regional Politics and the Darfur Crisis Lee J.M. Seymour  Part 2: Multilateral Politics  3. The United Nations Security Council Michael MacKinnon  4. The African Union Cristina Badescu and Linnea Bergholm  5. The European Union Rory Keene and Asbjorn Wee  6. The International Criminal Court William A. Schabas  Part 3: Bilateral Politics  7. The United States Scott Stedjan and Colin Thomas-Jensen  8. The People’s Republic of China Ian Taylor  9. The United Kingdom Paul D. Williams  10. France Bruno Charbonneau  11. Canada David R. Black.  Conclusion David R. Black and Paul D. Williams

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David R. Black is Director of the Centre for Foreign Policy Studies and Associate Professor in Political Science at Dalhousie University, Canada. His current research interests focus on Canada and Sub-Saharan Africa, with emphases on human security, development assistance, multilateral diplomacy and extractive industry investment.

Paul D. Williams is Associate Professor of International Affairs and Associate Director, Security Policy Studies Program at George Washington University, USA. He also serves as Faculty Adviser for students with concentrations in Conflict & Conflict Resolution. He specializes in issues of conflict resolution, international peacekeeping and Africa's international relations.


'This collection of essays provide an elegant reminder of why international society is a contested concept and Darfur is a contested conflict. A first-rate piece of work about the central dilemmas facing governments, international organizations, NGOs, and citizens.' - Professor Thomas G. Weiss, The CUNY Graduate Center, USA

'Despite the attention focused on the conflict in Darfur since it broke out in 20003, there have been few systematic studies that probe the role of major regional and international players in the conflict. Black and Williams’ The International Politics of Atrocities: The Case of Darfur, fills this lacunae. Against the backdrop of the turbulence in Sudanese politics, the book has cogently assembled a broad range of expertise to examine the roles of multilateral and bilateral actors. The chapters are neatly woven around the organizing theme of the possibilities and limits to good international citizenship. The book is bound to find wide readership and improve our understanding of the complexity of external action and inaction in Darfur.' - Gilbert M. Khadiagala, Jan Smuts Professor of International Relations, The University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

'For me, this important book teaches us, through the evidence provided by regional specialists on Darfur from a variety of countries, that there is less to the notions of 'international society', 'international community', 'good international citizenship', 'solidarism', and 'responsibility to protect' than their official and academic proponents claim. Tragically, such a verdict is always likely to be starkest when 'mass atrocities' occur in Africa.' - Professor Ken Booth FBA, Senior Research Associate, Aberystwyth University, UK

'It will …be an invaluable resource for scholars of Darfur, human rights, and humanitarian intervention.' - Kenneth A. Rodman, William R. Cotter Distinguished Professor of Government, Colby College, USA

'This is an excellent volume: well-conceived, designed, researched and written… represents the very best of case-specific scholarship on the difficult (issue) of collective responses to genocidal conflict…(N)icely integrates IR theory and the details of this particular case. The study blends well broader concerns such as the existence and capacity of an "international society" and the tenaciously problematic case of Darfur.…gives the international response to Darfur a clear yardstick and we gain real insights into the challenges of the context and the failures of a robust and effective international response.'Tim Sisk, Professor and Director, Center for Sustainable Development and International Peace, Josef Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver