lisa monaghan

F. Deng (2010). Social Capital and Civil War. The Dinka Communities in Sudan's Civil War

It is generally assumed that violent conflict has a negative effect on social capital, and war zones are considered to be ‘zones of social capital deficiency’. This article challenges this position, and attempts to develop a more nuanced understanding of the status of social capital in the context of Sudan’s civil war. The empirical findings clearly question any simplistic assumption that conflict erodes social capital. While it is true that certain types of social capital have been a casualty of civil war, the opposite is the case in other communities. The article explains this difference by drawing a distinction between ‘endogenous’ and ‘exogenous’ counter-insurgency warfare. Communities in southern Sudan that were exposed to endogenous counter-insurgency warfare experienced a loss of social capital, but where exogenous violence dominated, there has been a deepening and strengthening of bonding social capital among and within communities.

Category: Anthropology and History

Sub-category: Socio-Cultural Groups and Practices