Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Professor Bonura's (farewell) talk tomorrow

From the Political Science Association:

Professor Bonura will be doing a presentation sponsored by PSA this Wednesday (16th) at 6:00pm in Wyatt 101. The lecture is on the insurgency in Southern Thailand and understanding political violence. Could you also mention that Professor Bonura will be leaving at the end of the year for Oxford so this will be one of the last times that we will be able to hear him speak? The lecture will last about 30 minutes, and a Q&A session will follow.

Here is the abstract Professor Bonura provided me with. You may choose to include if you want

Since January 2004, political violence in southern Thailand has claimed over 2700 lives, making the conflict the most violent in Southeast Asia today. Although rarely covered by media in the United States, the intensity of the violence, committed by both a wide range of militants and militias as well as the Thai government, has continued unabated to today.

Over the last three decades, explanations of intermittent violence in southern Thailand commonly refer to frameworks of ethnic separatism and Islamic militancy, or Thai nationalism as the cause of the region's conflict. Unlike previous periods, however, current violence in the region does not involve a clear separatist campaign motivated by ethnic or religious tensions between Malay Muslims and Thai Buddhists. Moreover, there have been no claims of responsibility, severe difficulties in substantiating official explanations or accounts of violence, and no singular political movement emerging to contest state authority. Professor Bonura will outline the possible causes of the conflict and suggest how the difficulties of understanding the conflict in southern Thailand poses challenges to common approaches toward understanding political violence more generally.