Deborah McFarlane

Lecturer in Politics and International Relations

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Deborah’s research focuses on the ways in which ordinary communities survive and navigate protracted violent conflict. In particular, she works on the civil war in Sri Lanka and the ways in which communities in the war-affected north and east developed and used forms of religious authority in order to create spaces outside of the major conflict dynamics through which to pursue political, social and humanitarian goals. Beneath this empirical focus, Deborah is interested in the ways in which religion and politics are conceptualised as binary forces and the ways in which this stymies our ability to understand how these fields constitute one another and interact in practice in post-colonial, conflict affected settings and prevent policy actors from fully recognising and engaging with the ambivalent potentials of religious actors and institutions.