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The Ship of Theseus and the Problem of 'Post-War' Answers to Contemporary Guatemalan Problems

Weston, Gavin and Djohari, Natalie. 2012. The Ship of Theseus and the Problem of 'Post-War' Answers to Contemporary Guatemalan Problems. History and Anthropology, 23(4), pp. 405-424. ISSN 0275-7206 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article considers the problems caused by the ubiquitous use of terms such as “postwar” and “postconflict” in the analysis of contemporary Guatemala. The terms feed a historical reductionism which conflates present-day social problems with the violence of the past while also conflating continuity, change, and historical and analytical categories. Drawing upon Plutarch's thought experiment “The Ship of Theseus”, we explore the paradox at the heart of the use of “postwar” and its synonyms and demonstrate the potentially harmful effects connected to the dominance of the term.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1080/02757206.2013.726717

Keywords:

Guatemala, Postwar, Conflict, Violence, Continuity

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Anthropology

Dates:

DateEvent
2012Published

Item ID:

11931

Date Deposited:

02 Jul 2015 09:10

Last Modified:

12 Feb 2019 10:56

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/11931

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