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And Patrick Habis

Sectarianism, Revolutionary Subjectivity and War in Syria – the case of the peaceful movement

Events unfolding in Syria since 2011 have all too often been depicted too simply as a “sectarian war”. Against the backdrop of such accounts, this article investigates the lived revolutionary experience of Syrians active in the peaceful revolutionary movement and the local coordination committees. A more nuanced ethnographic approach to sectarianism, revolutionary action and war reveals how young revolutionaries re-negotiate family background and sectarian histories in the face of the regime’s sectarian enterprises and narratives. Anti-sectarian features of revolutionary action on the part of the peaceful movement not only counteract the narratives of the regime. It also offers a window into revolutionary subjectivity and ideology in Syria’s peaceful movement as part of broader social changes occurring in Syria in the context of devastating war and destruction.