Violence and the Social Construction of Ethnic Identity

Violence and the Social Construction of Ethnic Identity,10.1162/002081800551398,International Organization,James D. Fearon,David D. Laitin

Violence and the Social Construction of Ethnic Identity   (Citations: 121)
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Is there case study evidence of a relationship between the socialconstruction of ethnic identities and the probability of ethnic war? Themere observation that ethnic identities are socially constructed doesnot by itself explain ethnic violence and may not even be particularlyrelevant. Our purpose here is to see if we can reject the nullhypothesis that the social construction of ethnicity has little or nobearing on the likelihood of ethnic violence. Our procedure is toexamine closely the narratives of expert observers of some highlyviolent episodes of ethnic relations. Although a different set of casestudies might yield different overall conclusions, the narratives weexamined contain useful clues about the mechanisms that link identityconstruction and ethnic violence.
Journal: International Organization - INT ORGAN , vol. 54, no. 4, pp. 845-877, 2000
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