Understanding former ‘Girl Soldiers’ central themes in the lives of formerly abducted girls in post-conflict Northern Uganda

Kiconco, Allen (2015). Understanding former ‘Girl Soldiers’ central themes in the lives of formerly abducted girls in post-conflict Northern Uganda. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Despite the heightened focus on the effects of war on girls, they are still being inappropriately grouped under the larger rubric of ‘women’ or ‘females’. Since the distinctions in girls’ and women’s war experiences are not yet well understood (McKay, 2006), this research argues that gender analysis is crucial to effective development as it relates to young soldiers. It also advocates a distinct analytical focus on girls who exit armed forces as young women (at times as a result of having children). This thesis is about formerly abducted girls in Acholi sub region, northern Uganda. As adolescents and teenagers, they were abducted by the Lord’s Resistance Army and many returned to their villages with children fathered by the fighters. This thesis systematically looks at their socio-economic reintegration process, experiences and progress over the years. Through a series of 57 in-depth and 12 group interviews, this qualitative study explores long-term reintegration from the participants’ perspectives. The study identifies and analyses the central themes in their lives, including: physical and mental scars of abduction and life in captivity, stigmatisation, marriage complexities, and economic hardships. To date, the growing body of reintegration literature has focused on the first one or two years after exiting an armed group, and long-term reintegration studies are still limited. Therefore, through these themes, the thesis contributes to the conceptualisation of reintegration and understanding of the participants’ past and current life situations.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of History and Cultures, Department of African Studies and Anthropology
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DT Africa
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/6420


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