Appel à contributions : “History of Conflicts in Lebanon. A Critical Perspective” – LIMITE : 30/09/2017
History of Conflicts in Lebanon. A Critical Perspective
Lebanon’s History has always been one of “conflict and consensus” (Haffar-Mills/Shehadi, 1988).
Well before it was established as a state in 1920, the Lebanese geographic space witnessed recurring crises ranging from sectarian violence, to social conflicts, internal displacement of populations, and massive killings (cf. the period of 1840-1860). To this day, the historiography of the country is contested by Lebanese religious communities and political groups. Deep-rooted myths surrounding the modern and contemporary history of the country still hamper the possibility of initiating a meaningful dialogue between former warring parties. In fact the various and contending narratives ranging from the 1840-1860 wars and massacres, the 1958 internal conflict, to the 1975-1990 Lebanon war, are scarcely addressed in the public sphere, and brushed over, if not absent, in schools’ history curricula.
The History of Conflicts in Lebanon. A Critical Perspective call for papers seeks to look into the causes of Lebanon’s vulnerability to recurring cycles of violence which stems from the country’s social structures and history of conflicts, which, in turn, are the results of the objectivation of mental structures. For decades, structural divisions swelled in the shadows of collective grievances and alleged crimes and festered in a culture of impunity and amnesia. Accountability anchored in uncovering the truth about the conflicts is not a sufficient step, but undoubtedly a necessary one towards rebuilding a trustworthy state. In short, the end of the Lebanese war in 1990, could have been a golden opportunity to address collective suffering and shared history of trauma, to prevent further violence. Instead it was neglected and took the back seat (C. Abou Jaoudé, 2014).