This course is a historical and analytical overview of conflict in Africa. It explores the causes of conflict as well as strategies which have been employed to resolve and transform conflict. To this end therefore, the course employs a range of theories ranging from economic, social, political, structural, state weakness, state capture, resource conflict, social identity, religion, ethnicity to mention but a few.


To familiarise students with the major academic and theoretical issues surrounding the causes of violent conflict on the continent

To offer insight on how a range of theoretical approaches can be applied to explain the causes of conflict

Develop and consolidate research and writing skills in an independent research project

Learning outcomes

Acquire knowledge on how conflicts on the continent have evolved from interstate to intrastate

Be able to understand and critically engage the key debates surrounding conflict and conflict transformation

The ability to apply theories from peace and conflict studies, as well as employ an interdisciplinary approach to understand conflict, peacemaking and peacebuilding

Be able to use knowledge acquired in this course as a foundation to courses in world history

Transferable skills

Independent research methods

Verbal and written skills

Critical assessment of written arguments

Ability to consolidate, assess, and present ideas

Methodology/Teaching arrangements

The following methods will be used to convey course material:

Seminar discussions facilitated and moderated by the lecturer as well as collaborative seminar presentations

Critical evaluation of relevant literature

In-class debate

Independent research linking case studies to course themes

Essay writing

Discussion and group-work