political science document for unverisites

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American Political Science ReviewVol. 103, No. 2May 2009doi:10.1017/S0003055409090212From Violence to Voting: War and Political Participation in UgandaCHRISTOPHER BLATTMANYale UniversityWhat is the political legacy of violent conflict? I present evidence for a link from past violenceto increased political engagement among excombatants. The evidence comes from northernUganda, where rebel recruitment generated quasiexperimental variation in who was conscriptedby abduction. Survey data suggest that abduction leads to substantial increases in voting and communityleadership, largely due to elevated levels of violence witnessed. Meanwhile, abduction and violence donot appear to affect nonpolitical participation. These patterns are not easily explained by conventionaltheories of participation, including mobilization by elites, differential costs, and altruistic preferences.Qualitative interviews suggest that violence may lead to personal growth and political activation, apossibility supported by psychological research on the positive effects of traumatic events. Although thegeneralizability of these results requires more evidence to judge, the findings challenge our understandingof political behavior and point to important new avenues of research.hat is the political legacy of a violent civilwar? Can perpetrators and victims becomeproductive citizens once the fighting stops?Policy makers are pessimistic. A recent World Bankreport sees the individual im

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