Paper $29.95 ISBN: 9781783605323 Published October 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781783605330 Published October 2016 For sale in North and South America only

Living by the Gun in Chad

Combatants, Impunity and State Formation

Marielle Debos

Living by the Gun in Chad

Marielle Debos

Distributed for Zed Books

192 pages | 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 | © 2016
Paper $29.95 ISBN: 9781783605323 Published October 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781783605330 Published October 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Drawing on more than ten years of fieldwork conducted in Chad, Marielle Debos explores the recourse to arms in a society in which living by the gun has become both an acceptable form of political expression and an everyday occupation. Debos shows that contrary to the popular association of the fighters with violence and chaos, these fighters actually continue to observe rules, informal borders, and hierarchies, even as their allegiances shift between rebel and government forces and the fighting drifts from Chad, Libya, and Sudan to the Central African Republic. Ultimately, Debos demonstrates that the real issue is ending the “inter-war” maintained and reproduced by state violence.

Combining ethnographic observation with in-depth theoretical analysis, Living by the Gun in Chad is a crucial contribution to our understanding of the intersections of war and peace that also serves as the definitive guide to the current situation in Chad.
 
Contents
Acknowledgements
Foreword
Introduction
 
Part I Armed violence: a (post)colonial history
1 Colonial wars and inter-wars
2 The professionalization of armed violence
 
Part II From one war to the next: rebellion, reintegration, defection
3 Fluid loyalties
4 Benefiting from war: the unequal share of war dividends
 
Part III Governing with arms: the ‘unnumbered decree’
5 A ‘militianised’ army
6 Governing the inter-war
 
Conclusion
Abbreviations
Notes
Bibliography
Index
 
Review Quotes
Alex DeWaal, executive director of the World Peace Foundation
“A one-of-a-kind book, a fascinating political ethnography of the men who make their living in the twilight between war and peace. Living by the Gun is the indispensable book on conflict and governance in Chad as well as a seminal analysis of the nature of contemporary war in Africa.”
Mats Utas, Uppsala University
“Debos’s book is a welcome contribution, providing a wealth of data and rare detail, resulting in new scholarly insights whose significance goes far beyond Chad’s borders.”
Danny Hoffman, University of Washington
“Indispensable reading for anyone struggling to understand why the gun has been, and remains, such an integral part of our global political economy.”
Koen Vlassenroot, Conflict Research Group, University of Ghent
“A compelling and deeply informed account of the militarization of politics and society in Chad. Rather than leading to chaos, it convincingly shows how armed violence produces political order and is a crucial part of daily practices of dominance.”
Stathis N. Kalyvas, Yale University
“The publication in English of Marielle Debos’s book allows a broad new readership to access her fascinating and eye-opening exploration of the liminal spaces between war and peace. A signal contribution to the study of violent conflict and its many implications for state and society.”
Ricardo Soares de Oliveira, University of Oxford
“Based on a decade of research in and around Chad, this book brings together an exemplary ethnographic commitment and deep theoretical sophistication. A must read far beyond the confines of African studies or conflict studies.”
Foreign Affairs
“Powerful. . . . In her insightful book, Debos argues that pervasive violence has fostered a soldiering culture that now permeates the country and that has normalized armed violence, even in times of peace.”
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