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Introduction: The Chocolate-Politics Continuum

  • Gwen Burnyeat
Chapter
Part of the Studies of the Americas book series (STAM)

Abstract

The introduction proposes the analytical continuum of chocolate and politics as the double core of the book, drawing on materialist anthropology. It introduces the Peace Community of San José de Apartadó, an emblematic organisation of victims of the Colombian conflict, mostly studied from the frame of human rights, thus meriting a fresh gaze from social anthropology, which offers the opportunity to understand them in their own terms, rather than as a case study. It proposes seeing this as an analytical shift from the gaze of ‘negative peace’ to ‘positive peace’, using Galtung’s terms from the field of peace studies. It gives an overview of the Colombian armed conflict and the category of victimhood, mobilised politically by groups such as the Peace Community to make moral claims. It presents the ethnographic scenario of Urabá, a conflict zone in the north-west of Colombia. It argues for seeing the production of the identity narratives of social movements as an everyday cultural practice, taking place simultaneously with other daily practices such as farming, drawing on Bourdieusian practice theory. It introduces the concepts of the ‘radical narrative’, the ‘organic narrative’ and the ‘alternative community’ collective identity, and ends by describing the structure of the text.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gwen Burnyeat
    • 1
  1. 1.University College LondonLondonUK

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