Introduction: Land Rights, Restitution, Politics, and War in Colombia


Cramer, Christopher, and Elisabeth Jean Wood. 2017. "Introduction: Land Rights, Restitution, Politics, and War in Colombia." Journal of Agrarian Change 17 (4): 733-8.

Authors: Christopher Cramer, Elisabeth Jean Wood


This paper introduces contributions to a symposium that report some of the findings and arguments to emerge from a collaborative research project involving five Colombian universities forming the Observatorio de Restitución y Regulación de Derechos de Propiedad Agraria (Observatory of Restitution and Regulation of Agrarian Property Rights). In a number of ways, the research presented in the symposium advances understanding of the political economy of rural Colombia, and of war in Colombia, and the papers, drawing on the original evidence collected by Observatorio researchers, develop arguments that have a wider relevance too for agrarian political economy and the understanding of violent conflict. In particular, the papers highlight the direct participation of elites in violent conflict; the varieties and nuances of wartime primitive accumulation; the complexities of the state's role in wartime agrarian political economy; the gender dimensions of agrarian conflict; the interaction of war and law; and the significance for service provision of farm size. As Colombia—hopefully—passes from long war to peace, these arguments and this evidence may be valuable in debates about what kind of peace can develop.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Agriculture, Economies, Gender, Peacebuilding, Peace Processes, Rights, Land Rights, Violence Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2017

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