Children and youth are disproportionately affected by violence, insecurity and conflict; and yet are rarely considered actors in their own right. How can we better engage with children and youth, as well as theorise their presence when considering international politics? How can the diverse experiences of youth be accounted for without relying on stereotypes and assumptions? What does it mean to take a child-centric approach to peacebuilding? Who is still not heard when issues of children’s rights or youth participation do make it ‘on the table’? What are the implications of understanding conflict or violence in other parts of the world through a visual repertoire of children who are suffering?
My work centres considerations of children and youth when thinking about conflict and peace. It pays attention to the politics of the everyday and how we can better account for the actions of communities and people often overlooked in discussions of violence and peace. To do this I approach these questions with a feminist curiosity (to draw on Cynthia Enloe) and an explicit attention to the embodied experiences of those made marginal or invisible in the doing of politics, as well as of academia. My work is situated within international relations and peace and conflict studies, but draws to a great extent on anthropological and feminist theories and methodologies. I have undertaken fieldwork in Colombia and Guatemala and have an abiding interest in, and love for, Latin America.
These questions and considerations have evolved into several thematic projects including: an engagement with the participation of young people in responding to peace and violence from the everyday to the international; the multiple ways children and youth are represented in conflict and crises; and the role of pop culture in thinking about militarism, conflict and the bodies caught up in violence. Read more about each:
These are broad thematic areas that my work develops; Writings & Media includes a full list of academic and non-academic work on these and other topics.