A Civil Society Deferred: The Tertiary Grip of Violence in the Sudan

Abdullahi A. Gallab

Details: 264 pages    6x9
Cloth: $74.95   ISBN 13: 978-0-8130-3688-5   
Paper: $24.95   ISBN 13: 978-0-8130-4446-0   
Pubdate: 8/28/2011
Review(s): 3 available

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"This original and revealing book is a significant contribution to the understanding of the conflicts that have gripped the Sudan for decades and may well end only in the division of the country."--Peter Woodward, author of Sudan 1898-1989 and U.S. Foreign Policy in the Horn of Africa

A Civil Society Deferred chronicles the socio-political history and development of violence in the Sudan and explores how it has crippled the state, retarded the development of a national identity, and ravaged the social and material life of its citizens. It offers the first detailed case studies of the development of both a colonial and postcolonial Sudanese state and grounds the violence that grips the country within the conflict between imperial rule and a resisting civil society.

Abdullahi Gallab establishes his discussion around three forms of violence: decentralized (individual actors using targets as a means to express a particular grievance); centralized (violence enacted illegitimately by state actors); and "home-brewed" (violence among local actors toward other local actors). The Turkiyya, the Mahdiyya, the Anglo-Egyptian, and the postcolonial states have all taken each of these forms to a degree never before experienced. The same is true for the various social and political hierarchies in the country, the Islamists, and the opposing resistance groups and liberation movements.

These dichotomies have led to the creation of a political center that has sought to extend power and exploit the margins of Sudanese society. Drawing from academic, archival, and a variety of oral and written material, as well as personal experience, Gallab offers an original examination of identity and social formation in the region.

Abdullahi A. Gallab, assistant professor of African and African American religious studies at Arizona State University, is the author of The First Islamist Republic: Development and Disintegration of Islamism in the Sudan.

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