Civil Society and Conflict in West Africa

Part of the Nonprofit and Civil Society Studies book series (NCSS, volume 20)


This chapter reviews the intersection of conflict and civil society, focusing on three dimensions. The first is that, depending on how civil society is defined, it can include groups that have aims and methods that can exacerbate conflict situations. The second dimension is the role of civil society organizations during conflict, including the potential of international and national civil society groups to frame a conflict in particular ways. Third, the chapter addresses the role of civil society in postconflict peace-building initiatives. It offers a critical review of some of the conceptual issues in the civil society literature in relation to each of these intersections. Examples across West Africa are cited from cases in Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Nigeria.


Civil Society Civil Society Organization Conflict Situation Transitional Justice Child Soldier 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of VirginiaVirginiaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Social AnthropologyCambridgeUK

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