Conference Essay: Combat-Related Killings and Democratic Accountability: Towards an Understanding of the Cultural Capacities to Deal with Matters of War

Martina Kolanoski, Oren Livio, Thomas Scheffer


This report was written by the organizers of the workshop "Accounting for Combat-Related Killings," which took place at the Goethe University Frankfurt in July 2014. Scholars from Israel, the United Kingdom, the United States,, Canada, and Germany came together to present and discuss case studies on the discourse practices involved in accounting for combat-related killings in different national and transnational contexts. Intending to reflect on the methodological skills needed to analyze newly available process data, the workshop brought together scholars using different methodological approaches (here mainly ethnomethodology and critical discourse analysis). In regard to the global trend towards increasing numbers of so called permanent, asymmetric, small, and permanent wars, the report turns to concepts, methods, and empirical findings that foster understandings of the difficulties war generates at social, cultural and political levels as well as the manner in which these predicaments are negotiated, denied, or deflected. The report summarizes the workshop by presenting the papers in a specific order, beginning with accounting in combat, followed by tribunals of accounting, and finally the sedimentation of accounting in cultural representations.



accountability; warfare; democratic control; methodology; ethnomethodology; critical discourse analysis; critical ethnomethodology

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Copyright (c) 2015 Martina Kolanoski, Oren Livio, Thomas Scheffer

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