Conventional wisdom portrays war zones as chaotic and anarchic. In reality, they are often orderly. This work introduces a new phenomenon in the study of civil war: wartime social order. It investigates theoretically and empirically the emergence and functioning of social order in conflict zones. By theorizing the interaction between combatants and civilians and how they impact wartime institutions, the study delves into rebel behavior, civilian agency and their impact on the conduct of war. Based on years of fieldwork in Colombia, the theory is tested with qualitative and quantitative evidence on communities, armed groups, and individuals in conflict zones. The study shows how armed groups strive to rule civilians, and how the latter influence the terms of that rule. The theory and empirical results illuminate our understanding of civil war, institutions, local governance, non-violent resistance, and the emergence of political order.
Introductory chapter (PDF)
Online appendix (PDF)
Recipient of the Conflict Research Society's Book of the Year Award, 2018.
Reviewed in Perspectives on Politics, The Journal of Politics, Latin American Politics and Society, The London School of Economics Review of Books, The Canadian Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Studies, and Latin American Research Review.
Author-meets-critics roundtable at MPSA, Chicago (2017); LASA, Lima, Peru (2017); and APSA, San Francisco (2017).
Included in Muse's list of The 100 Greatest Latin American History & Politics Books.
Featured in the Latin America Today podcast with Adam Isacson.