Communal violence and transition in Myanmar

JCA readers in Copenhagen may be able to attend this event. It includes two authors – Nick Cheesman and Gerard McCarthy – from our recent special issue Interpreting Communal Violence in Myanmar:

Communal violence and transition in Myanmar

Tuesday 22 August 2017, 13.00-16.30
DIIS ∙ Danish Institute for International Studies
Gl. Kalkbrænderi Vej 51A
2100 Copenhagen

After decades of military rule and civil war, Myanmar has embarked on a comprehensive transition towards democracy, market economy and sustainable peace. While much has been achieved in terms of opening up political and economic life, the transition remains neither complete, nor ensured. The early optimism and high hopes are increasingly giving way to concerns over the inclusiveness of the process and the extent to which reforms will benefit all groups in society, including ethnic and religious minorities.

Focusing on the conflicted politics of identity and change in Myanmar, this seminar zooms in on two distinct processes: the recent rise of communal violence and anti-Muslim sentiments, especially but not exclusively in Rakhine State; and the peace negotiations aimed at settling the decade-long armed conflicts between the military and ethnic armed organizations. The seminar asks why violence remains a recurrent feature of everyday political life in Myanmar and explores – with a particular focus on the youth – the prospects and promises of peaceful and inclusive development in Myanmar.


  • Nick Cheesman, Fellow, Department of Political & Social Change, Australian National University
  • Gerard McCarthy, Associate Director, Myanmar Research Centre, and Doctoral Fellow, Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs, Australian National University
  • Justine Chambers, Associate Director, Myanmar Research Centre, and Doctoral Fellow, Department of Anthropology, Australian National University
  • Mikael Gravers, Associate Professor Emeritus, Department of Anthropology, Aarhus University
  • Helene Maria Kyed, Senior Researcher, DIIS
  • Louise Riis Andersen, Senior Researcher, DIIS
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