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Høst 2021

SVF-3022 Culture, Conflict and Society - 10 stp

The course is administrated by

Faculty of Humanities, Social Sciences and Education

Type of course

The course is compulsory for Master's degree students in Peace and Conflict Transformation, and open to other Master's level students as an elective.

Course contents

The course enables students to critically analyse and evaluate the relevance of contextual cultural and societal issues in efforts at understanding violent conflicts and peace-building. It applies perspectives from anthropology, religious studies and psychology to conflicts, peace and conflict transformation. It represents an attempt to conceptualise violent conflicts and related issues as inter-subjective experiences with cultural and psychological dimensions.

The topics addressed include: Anthropological perspectives on culture and conflict; Anthropology of difference and images of the other; Ethnicity, nationalism and conflict; Psychology, health, war and peace; and symbolic meanings and cosmologies.

Application deadline

Applicants from Nordic countries: June 1st for the autumn semester and December 1st for the spring semester.

Applicants from outside the Nordic countries: October 1st for the spring semester and April 15th for the autumn semester.

Admission requirements

Students who are not registered for the Master's Degree Programme in Peace and Conflict Transformation (MPCT), must have a Bachelor`s degree in the Humanities or Social Sciences. All other bachelor degree holders may be admitted to the course upon application.

Objective of the course

Students who have successfully completed the course should have the following learning outcomes:


Analytical understanding

Skills and competences

Language of instruction

All lectures, readings, assignments, discussions and the final exam shall be in English.

Teaching methods

There will be a mix of lectures and seminar discussions.

The course is to be evaluated by the SSL forum each semester the course is offered, as well as in an anonymous online evaluation every second time the course is offered.


Towards the end of the course, the students will be divided into pairs to make oral presentations (max 10 minutes) on a topic related to cultural, religious or psychological issues in their home countries or a chosen country/region vis-à-vis practices in other contexts. These presentations shall draw upon the course readings.


Candidates will write a school examination of 6 hours, consisting of both short questions and one essay question.

Grading is on the scale of A to F, where F is Fail.

A re-sit exam will be arranged for this course.

Date for examination

Take-home exam hand out date 25.11.2021 hand in date 25.11.2021

The date for the exam can be changed. The final date will be announced at your faculty early in May and early in November.

Lectures Autumn 2021
Lecture/Seminar f.aman. Ragnhild Dybdahl
post.doc. Zerihun Abebe Woldeselassie