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25 Years

The Social Reintegration of Ex-Combatants in Colombia

Fri, 04/23/2021 - 12:00pm
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Presented by Michael Soto, Department of Sociology

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The 2016 Peace Agreement between the Colombian Government and the The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) formally ended a conflict that has extended for nearly 60 years.  More than 13,000 FARC ex-combatants demobilized to more than 24 settlement camps across the country.  I conducted fieldwork primarily in the state of Meta, covering two formal settlement camps (Mesetas and Vista Hermosa) and two cities (Villavicencio and also the country’s capital Bogotá). I interviewed both ex-combatants and the individuals they are interacting with following the Peace Agreement, asking about their biography, cross-group interactions, and national historic events.  I build upon Maurice Halbwachs’s presentist approach to collective memory which focuses on groups, by engaging with scholarship on social networks.  I also draw on cultural sociology as I examine the meanings that individuals attribute to their relationships.