Live action role play (larp) in a context of conflict: An ethnographic study of larp in Ramallah

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Live action role play (larp) in a context of conflict: An ethnographic study of larp in Ramallah

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Publication 1-year master student thesis
Title Live action role play (larp) in a context of conflict: An ethnographic study of larp in Ramallah
Author(s) Englund, Tindra
Date 2014
English abstract
This study contributes to the specific segment of the research field of peace and conflict studies (PACS) pertaining to the use of art as a tool for conflict transformation towards a positive peace. It is original for its choice of subject - live action role play (larp) as a potential tool for conflict transformation. The purpose of the study is to explore, describe and interpret the conditions for, and the content of, larp in present-day Palestine in order to construct a normative framework for how larp could be used as a tool for conflict transformation. In order to answer the question on the uses of this art form in Palestine, and the effects it has on the participants, their immediate surroundings, and the larger society around them, original empirical material was produced during a two-month long minor field study in Ramallah. It consists of ethnographic observations and ethnographic field interviews, as well as ten in-depth semi-structured interviews conducted between 14th of February and the 12th of April 2014. The material was analyzed with regard to Galtung’s theory of positive peace and Lederach’s theory of conflict transformation as well as to other selected theoretical and empirical work on the role of art as a tool for conflict transformation. In the specific context that has been studied, the normative framework constructed through these findings show that larps and the larping community is encouraging a personal (norm-questioning) development within its participants. It also shows that larps could be used as a tool for evoking the moral imagination, helping people to imagine a future in peace, but also as a tool for rehabilitation and processing strong emotions. Within this framework, it is also suggested that larps could be used as a tool advocacy work as well as nonviolent resistance. Finally, larps could be used as a tool for creating a liminal space and social platforms where Israelis and Palestinians could interact on neutral ground. This thesis claims that larp is a potentially significant tool for conflict transformation and therefore deserves further research within the field of Peace and Conflict Studies.
Publisher Malmö högskola/Kultur och samhälle
Pages 58
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) larp
conflict transformation
lederach
peacebuilding
art
Ramallah
Palestine
Youth
ethnographic
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/17762 (link to this page)

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