The Effects of War-Related Mental Health Issues on Post-Conflict Reconciliation and Transitional Justice

by Alexander Miller Tate

Introduction 

A common theme in contemporary post-conflict security and development literature is the instability of states that have recently experienced a cessation of armed conflict. As of 2008, slightly less than half of all civil wars were a result of the breakdown of post-conflict peace [1]. This has provoked a burgeoning literature investigating how a recently post-conflict state can avoid relapse. Common solutions involve processes of reconciliation between oppositional groups, as well as the securing of transitional justice for those wronged, yet this literature and that surrounding the prevalence of mental health issues in post-conflict environments have rarely crossed over.

The notions of reconciliation and transitional justice will be defined in context. Since the effects of mental health highlighted in this paper should apply to these sorts of initiatives quite generally, a stringent definition is unnecessary. To a lesser extent, the plurality of studies utilised in what follows precludes any all-encompassing definition of ‘post-conflict’. Bearing this in mind, however, the vast majority [2] of the countries referred to will have experienced a period of time where there were over 1000 battle deaths in a year within their borders, meaning they would have been included in the Correlates of War datasets [3]. Roughly, states are post-conflict when they have dropped below this threshold. This should not be taken as an endorsement of this definition, as it inevitably leaves out many countries where the issues identified in this paper may be relevant. Nevertheless, it provides an indicator of the areas where the conclusions will be most generalisable.

The studies utilised here use different definitions of mental health and/or illness. Most of the studies available evaluate mental health strictly in terms of clinically diagnosable psychiatric disorders.  I shall make it clear where a specific study identifies symptoms rather than a diagnosable instance of the disorder itself. This narrow focus is at odds with the World Health Organisation’s more holistic approach, where mental health is a certain state of well-being and social function [4]. This practical narrowing of the concept is unavoidable, as the majority of the literature implicitly endorses it, with epidemiologists and clinicians having conducted most of the available studies. While this position is regrettable in terms of fully understanding the effects of mental health on post-conflict states, the well-researched effects of clinical psychiatric disorders make it easier to understand some of their consequences in post-conflict environments.

The format of this paper is slightly unusual, as it does not make use of any in-depth case studies. Instead, it utilises a more cursory examination of a large number of studies conducted in many different countries. There are two main reasons for this.

Firstly, and pragmatically, there is little literature that directly addresses the theme of how mental health concerns may affect a country’s progress in post-conflict situations [5]. Certainly, while such links are sometimes hypothesised, and slightly more often hinted at, they are only very rarely developed in detail for any single state. Any single case study, therefore, would suffer from a dearth of relevant data. Sacrificing a degree of depth in favour of breadth is the only plausible way to sidestep this difficulty.

Secondly, in utilising a large number of examples, this paper is better placed to highlight patterns that recur across cases and develop the beginnings of what could become an empirically testable theory. Focus on fewer states would preclude such generalisability.

While not all of the countries included in the studies have actually suffered a relapse into violence, this does not preclude their utility in illustrating the negative effects of mental health concerns on reconciliation and transitional justice mechanisms. It merely indicates that those issues have (as of yet) not proven destructive to the processes ongoing in those states. Such a fact indicates that detailed studies of individual states are needed, and have the potential to be particularly fruitful, as we may gain a better understanding of how mental health issues can be effectively handled in post-conflict environments.

The paper is structured as follows. The following section reviews the existing literature, establishing the prevalence and basic characteristics of mental health issues in post-conflict environments. The following three sections take a closer look at specific risks untreated mental health problems may pose to successful reconciliation and transitional justice efforts. I conclude by discussing how these factors may interact, and suggest that effective MH interventions should be an integral aspect of any post-conflict programme aimed at preventing future violence.

The Problem: Mental Health in Post-Conflict Regions

Mental health problems are extremely common amongst those who have directly experienced armed conflict. Publicly familiar examples include the prevalence of ‘shellshock’ in world war combatants [6] [7], the high suicide rates amongst wounded Vietnam veterans [8] and ‘Gulf War Syndrome’ [9].

As late as 2004 however, some authors lamented the lack of studies looking at those left behind in war-affected communities after violence had ended, particularly civilians caught up in protracted civil wars [10]. Thankfully, there has been a recent upsurge of research in this area, which is perhaps indicative of a contemporary preoccupation with ‘New Wars’ [11], where civilians are strategically targeted in much higher numbers, and more viciously, than was common in the ‘Old Wars’ [12] [13].

Studies have also consistently demonstrated that those who experience more and more intense episodes of trauma during conflict become more susceptible to mental health problems [14]. For example, the number of human rights violations suffered by individuals during the Balkan conflict was positively correlated with risk of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), major depression and other symptoms of mental health disorders [15].

The vast majority of studies on mental health trauma in post-conflict zones understand effective health interventions as ends in themselves. While it is obviously valuable to identify and treat instances of psychological trauma for the sake of the individuals, the lack of research into the more general effects of such problems on post-conflict states is striking [16]. Few studies made concerns regarding the negative effects of mental health problems on post-conflict reconciliation central, though a few have come tantalisingly close [17] [18]. Such a perspective has been preliminarily applied to the process of reconciliation in Columbia, though this focused exclusively on issues related to anger, ignoring other mental health-related factors [19].

The following will attempt to highlight the key negative effects that widespread mental health problems may have on successful post-conflict reconciliation and transitional justice. These effects will fall broadly into three categories. The next section considers the reduced ability of individuals to participate effectively in positive intergroup contact. The subsequent section highlights desires for revenge, and resentment towards restorative transitional justice efforts. The final substantive section examines the effects of pathological anger on community and familial-level violence. It is posited that all three of these factors may act simultaneously in post-conflict environments to frustrate efforts to avoid recurring violence. 

Mental Health and Cross-Group Reconciliation

Many mental illnesses inhibit several of the basic cognitive skills considered prerequisite for successful post-conflict reconciliation between groups [20]. These skills tend to be those that promote positive intergroup contact, such as collective problem solving amongst people who were on opposing sides of conflict, and perspective taking, to “increase knowledge of the other” [21]. Constant negative thought patterns, such as those found in people exhibiting signs of major depression, are thought to interfere with the adoption of a “constructive attitude in interpersonal relations”, while PTSD symptomatology interferes with the ability to recollect about trauma [22]. Diminished ability to complete interpersonal problem solving tasks is also consistently found amongst sufferers of depression [23] [24].

From the point of view of reconciling groups on opposite sides of a conflict, this is highly problematic. It has been suggested and somewhat corroborated that such processes require common and positive contact between members of the groups in question [25]. The most common attempts to promote positive contact have tried to facilitate forums for shared problem solving as a form of intergroup cooperation [26] [27]. One example of such a group is the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), which reaches across the ethnic divides in the former Yugoslavia and attempts to bring together people of differing ethnicities to engage in strategic lobbying of government to support attempts to uncover mass graves. They are thus united in the common goal of finding missing loved ones [28].

Since these forums rely on people having a reasonable level of cognitive ability in areas of conflict resolution and collective problem solving, they are likely to be reduced in effectiveness if those involved have a diminished capacity due to mental health problems. This is one explanation for the comments of an Albanian mother, who was sent to Macedonia by the ICMP for engagement with Serb mothers. She stated that although she had nothing particularly against the Serbs, she was simply unable to sit around and discuss ‘personal issues’. Her expressed problem was not that she considered it a waste of time, but that she believed that “Some people can do that. Not me” [29]. While the evidence is circumstantial, it seems more than possible that her inability to engage fully in the ICMP project is related to experience of war trauma. It is a staggering oversight of the contemporary literature that, despite the unambiguous theoretical connection between diminished ability for productive social engagement and mental health issues, no research has explicitly and systematically investigated the lived-experience of traumatised individuals in the reconciliation process.

For now, it seems fair to say that, given the apparent links between diminished cognitive skills necessary for reconciliatory activities and symptoms of major depression and PTSD, as well as these disorders’ prevalence amongst post-conflict populations, it would be surprising if the above problem were never actualised on the ground. As a result, there is a strong case for thinking that reconciliation activities based on these sorts of models, though probably effective when successfully applied, are at risk of leaving out substantial numbers of people in the regions. In particular, the most likely to be left out are those who have suffered the worst experiences during the conflict and are subsequently suffering with more debilitating mental health conditions. If this does regularly occur in post-conflict areas, it poses a major hurdle to successful cross-group reconciliation efforts, as it precludes the involvement of large sections of the population. 

Vengefulness and Restorative Justice

Many academics and policymakers advocate the use of restorative methods of transitional justice in post-conflict environments, such as truth commissions that offer the possibility of amnesty in return for full and open truth-telling (for example, in South Africa) or community-level courts with fewer expressly punitive powers able to command (in theory at least) a sense of community ownership over the transitional justice process, as well as relieving the pressure on an overburdened national judiciary (such as Rwandan gacaca courts in the aftermath of the genocide) [30]. These aim at breaking cycles of violence by providing victims with the redress they desire, without antagonizing the perpetrator, thus promoting peace and reconciliation [31] [32].

The purported advantages of restorative systems are many. They are generally associated with long-term stability of post-conflict states, at least if the nation has transitioned to democracy [33]. Moreover, truth commissions supposedly serve a moderately therapeutic role, allowing survivors to let go of hatred for those who wronged them [34].

It has, however, been highlighted that, firstly, these sorts of efforts need a fairly broad spectrum of support if they are to actually achieve these aims and, secondly, that amnesty or light punishment for the perpetrators of violence can legitimately be perceived as unjust by victims [35]. Such problems could, in particularly serious cases, lead to broad public resentment of the government, robbing the state of legitimacy at what is already a time of instability. [36]

There is substantial evidence that those suffering from poor mental health in the aftermath of conflict are less likely to support these restorative systems of transitional justice. In Rwanda, those with symptoms of PTSD were less likely to support the gacaca [37] process, wherein génocidaires and other war criminals from the 1994 conflict are tried by the communities they wronged in a relatively informal process open to both attendance and input from all people in the locality [38] [39]. The same study revealed that violent methods of resolving conflict were favoured over more peaceful methods by those in northern Uganda presenting with symptoms of PTSD and depression [40].

Furthermore, in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) conflict area, the 45% of men and 38% of women experiencing PTSD symptoms were less likely to accept amnesty for the fighters than others. This is despite the fact that, both in DRC and northern Uganda, witnessing the murder of a family member or being forcibly displaced generally made it more likely that the respondent would support a policy of amnesty [41]. Likewise, in the case of Ugandan and Congolese former child soldiers, despite obviously being exposed to large numbers of traumatic events (92.9% had witnessed shootings, 84% had been seriously beaten and 54.4% [42] forced to kill), unwillingness to reconcile and desire for revenge was associated with PTSD symptom scores, not trauma exposure simpliciter [43].

All this suggests that unwillingness to engage in and support restorative forms of transitional justice, as well as desire to take revenge on perceived wrong-doers, is more closely associated with mental health problems than simply unjust war experience. This indicates that such justice processes are likely to be less effective in situations where there is no mental health intervention. This could explain the discovery that, in South Africa (where treatment rates for mental health conditions, especially those linked to human rights abuses during the apartheid years, are low), there was no statistically significant link between participation in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and psychiatric wellbeing or, crucially, feelings of forgiveness [44]. Furthermore, a lack of success may prove to be a barrier to a large proportion of the population accepting the post-conflict state as legitimate. So, to the extent that restorative transitional justice efforts are important in a post-conflict environment, it seems likely that their full potential can be realised only in tandem with targeted mental health interventions.

Explosive Anger, Extended Trauma and Societal Violence

Some authors have postulated a link between levels of individual anger and recurring violence on a societal level in post-conflict areas [45] [46]. While these models are mostly still in their empirical infancy, they do provide some compelling ideas.

One of the key motivators in Petersen & Zuckerman for treating anger seriously as a route to better understanding political violence is the observation that anger ‘lowers the threshold for attributing harmful intent’ [47]. This means that angry individuals are more likely to explain what happened to them in terms of purposive harm, than by reference to wider contextual features of the situation. Intuitively, attributing intent, and by extension blame, to members of a group in a conflict will make it harder for individuals to reconcile with them.

It is important not to medicalise anger too much here. This reductive viewpoint is prevalent in the psychological literature, which has a marked tendency to speak of anger almost entirely in neurobiological terms [48]. Some anger is clearly to be expected, and even justified, if harm is done to oneself, family or community. Certainly, not all anger in post-conflict situations can be reasonably treated as pathological; much of it will be “a normative response to legitimate grievances” [49]. Nevertheless, for the purposes of this paper, useful information can be obtained from studies careful to look for symptoms of affective disorders which bring about episodes of anger experienced as acutely distressing to the individual and/or those around them.

Symptoms of intermittent explosive disorder amongst survivors of the occupation and civil war in Timor-Leste were very prevalent, especially amongst socially disadvantaged groups like women and those living in poverty [50] [51][52]. Exposure to trauma events during the conflict was the best predictor for suffering from episodes of explosive anger subsequently [53]. It was also found to have a great co-morbidity with social disability and reports of (occasionally violent) conflict with other members of the community [54]. It is these latter features that mean such occurrences can reasonably be thought of as a disorder, rather than a rational response to trauma. At the point where anger seriously interferes with the sufferers’ lives, it may well be pathological.

Given that explosive anger is characterised by sudden feelings of rage, and, more rarely, physical assaults on others by the sufferers, it is unsurprising that it has been posited to contribute to cyclical violence in regions which have experienced traumatic wars[55]. Any solid connection with re-emergence of society-level violence per se is yet to be empirically established, but these situations do, nevertheless, have some noteworthy elements.

Firstly, the studies demonstrated that feelings of rage classed as incidences of explosive anger have a great co-morbidity with PTSD, while taking much longer to subside than symptoms of the latter[56]. This suggests that explosive anger may be present, and cause both individual and society-wide difficulties, for longer than other kinds of mental health problems.

Secondly, explosive anger in Timor-Leste was most common amongst women [57]. This highlights how important issues of equality and oppression intersect with mental health in post-conflict regions, and strongly suggests that already marginalised groups ought to be prioritised in situations where mental health interventions are being planned. This is not just the upshot of a clear moral duty to prevent, as far as is possible, the further marginalisation and victimisation of these groups; if mental illness is most prevalent amongst these individuals, targeted interventions may make the most effective use of restricted resources.

Thirdly, again in the context of post-conflict Timor-Leste, the combined effects of explosive episodes and alcohol abuse often included physical violence and aggression towards children[58]. This indicates that explosive anger may pose a threat of passing down trauma rooted in war to future generations, even in times of relative peace and stability. Even on a very restricted understanding of the goals of post-conflict reconciliation, this is undesirable. It would mean the potential extension of the effects of conflict trauma to those who were not even directly affected by, and perhaps not even alive during, the initial conflict.

Given how long reconciliation efforts may last, the above suggests that the problems associated with war trauma outlined in the previous sections may, by their nature, be somewhat self-sustaining. Children who suffered at the hands of those with undiagnosed or untreated mental health issues would subsequently suffer many of the impairments seen in the original traumatised population.

These data suggest that at least some instances of personal anger in post-conflict zones can be considered clinical and that these can pose significant challenges to the rehabilitation of a post-conflict population, due to the disabling effects of the condition on both the sufferers and those around them, as well as the condition’s relative longevity. These issues stand even if individual feelings of rage are found not to contribute significantly to an upsurge in society-level violence.

Conclusion

The primary goal of this paper was to make the case for the importance of considering mental health when attempting to prevent a post-conflict state returning to violence. We saw in sections 3 and 4 that untreated MH issues could seriously affect both capacity and desire to engage in reconciliatory and restorative processes designed to lower tensions. Furthermore, individuals suffering from pathological anger were seen, in section 5, to struggle to engage positively in their communities for a long time after conflict subsided. There was also a risk of transmission of trauma to the next generation if children were exposed to episodes of explosive rage.

At the very least, these three issues strongly suggest that effective MH interventions may help to improve the effectiveness of measures designed to mitigate the risk of relapse into violence in post-conflict regions. To the extent that we believe such measures can succeed, unrecognised and undiagnosed MH issues can pose a barrier to the realisation of this possibility, and can be tentatively conjectured to play a significant—though undoubtedly partial— explanatory role in why around a quarter of efforts to secure peace at the end of conflicts end in relapse into violence [59]. More empirical—and indeed theoretical—research should be undertaken in order to corroborate or refute this hypothesis.

To emphasise: this is not at all to suggest that these interventions should not be pursued for their own sake. In the author’s opinion, the humanitarian aspects of mental health in conflict-afflicted regions are at least as important as the political and security dimensions. Nevertheless, it is not necessary to see them in a purely humanitarian light to appreciate their importance.

Nor should this be seen as a way of adding to the stigma faced by those who suffer mental illness, by painting them as ‘conflict risk factors’. Wholeheartedly rejecting this characterisation is particularly important in certain post-conflict communities where the degree of stigma and isolation faced by those suffering from the severe effects of war trauma is already severe. [60] Any blame for a resurgence of violence influenced by mental health factors lies squarely with those who caused the trauma, and those who failed to adequately respond to it.

Ergo, efforts to identify and treat mental health issues as a matter of urgency in the early stages of post-conflict transition should be a policy priority. Moreover, such efforts, and in what senses they may be required, should be subject to further empirical investigation.

Notes 

[1] Collier, P., Hoeffler, A. and Söderbom, M. (2008) Post-conflict risks. Journal of Peace Research, 45 (4): 461–478.

[2] A likely exception is South Africa, though it is included here as there is good access to data on the psychiatric impact of its Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

[3] Sarkees, M.R. and Schafer, P. (2000) The Correlates of War Data On War: an Update To 1997. Conflict Management and Peace Science, 18 (1): 123–144.

[4] World Health Organisation (2013), ‘Mental Health: A state of wellbeing‘. [Accessed 23 April 2014].

[5] For exceptions, see (Pham et al., 2010; Kaminer et al., 2001; Königstein, 2013; Bayer et al., 2007).

[6] Andreasen, N.C. (2011) What is post-traumatic stress disorder? Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience, 13 (3): 240.

[7] Murthy, R.S. and Lakshminarayana, R. (2006) Mental health consequences of war: a brief review of research findings. World Psychiatry, 5 (1): 25.

[8] Bullman, T.A. and Kang, H.K. (1996) The risk of suicide among wounded Vietnam veterans. American Journal of Public Health, 86 (5): 662–667.

[9] Kilshaw, S. (2004) Gulf War syndrome. Psychiatry, 3 (8): 17–20.

[10] Musisi, S. (2004) Editorial: Mass trauma and mental health in Africa. African Health Sciences, 4 (2): 80–82.

[11] Though their ‘newness’ has been widely challenged, they do seem to be distinct kinds of conflict. See; Kaldor, M. (2013a) In Defence of New Wars. Stability, 2 (1).

[12] Tol, W.A., Kohrt, B.A., Jordans, M.J., et al. (2010) Political violence and mental health: a multi-disciplinary review of the literature on Nepal. Social Science & Medicine, 70 (1): 35–44.

[13] Kaldor, M. (2013b) New and old wars: Organised violence in a global era, John Wiley & Sons: New Jersey.

[14] Mollica, R.F., Cardozo, B.L., Osofsky, H.J., et al. (2004) Mental health in complex emergencies. The Lancet, 364 (9450): 2058–2067.

[15] Priebe, S., Bogic, M., Ashcroft, R., et al. (2010) Experience of human rights violations and subsequent mental disorders – a study following the war in the Balkans. Social science & medicine, 71 (12): 2170–2177.

[16] Königstein, H.F. (2013) The influence of mental health on reconciliation in post-war Lebanon. [online].  [Accessed 15 April 2014].

[17] Brooks, R., Silove, D., Steel, Z., et al. (2011) Explosive anger in postconflict Timor Leste: Interaction of socio-economic disadvantage and past human rights-related trauma. Journal of Affective Disorders, 131 (1): 268–276.

[18] Silove, D. (1999) The psychosocial effects of torture, mass human rights violations, and refugee trauma: toward an integrated conceptual framework. The Journal of nervous and mental disease, 187 (4): 200–207.

[19] Petersen, R. & Zuckerman, S. (2010), ‘Anger, violence and political science’, in Potegal M., Stemmler, G. & Spielberger, C. (eds.), International Handbook of Anger: Constituent and Concomitant Biological, Psychological and Social Processes, London: Springer.

[20] Königstein (2013), The influence of mental health on reconciliation in post-war Lebanon.

[21] Freeman, C.M. (2012) The psychosocial need for intergroup contact: practical suggestions for reconciliation initiatives in Bosnia and Herzegovina and beyond. Intervention, 10 (1): 17–29.

[22] Königstein, 2013 Influence of mental health on reconciliation in Lebanon.

[23] Marx, E.M. and Schulze, C.C. (1991) Interpersonal problem-solving in depressed students. Journal of Clinical Psychology [online]. [Accessed 17 April 2014].

[24] Lyubomirsky, S. and Nolen-Hoeksema, S. (1995) Effects of self-focused rumination on negative thinking and interpersonal problem solving. Journal of personality and social psychology, 69 (1): 176.

[25] Freeman (2012) The psychosocial need for intergroup contact.

[26] (ibid.)

[27] United Nations Development Programme (2010), Capacity Development in Post-Conflict Countries, New York: UNDP.

[28] Freeman (2012) The psychosocial need for intergroup contact.

[29] Di Lellio, A. and McCurn, C. (2013) Engineering Grassroots Transitional Justice in the Balkans: The Case of Kosovo. East European Politics & Societies, 27 (1): 129–148.

[30] Zehr, H. (2008) Doing justice, healing trauma: The role of restorative justice in peacebuilding. South Asian Journal of Peacebuilding, 1 (1).

[31] (ibid.)

[32] Morris, A. (2002) Critiquing the critics: A brief response to critics of restorative justice. British Journal of Criminology, 42 (3): 596–615.

[33] Gates, S., Binningsbo, H.M. and Lie, T.G. (2007) Post-conflict justice and sustainable peace. World Bank Policy Research Working Paper [online], (4191). [Accessed 23 April 2014].

[34] Kaminer, D., Stein, D.J., Mbanga, I., et al. (2001) The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa: relation to psychiatric status and forgiveness among survivors of human rights abuses. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 178 (4): 373–377.

[35] Waldorf, L. (2006) Rwanda’s failing experiment in restorative justice, in Sullivan, D. & Tifft, L. (eds.) Handbook of restorative justice: A global perspective, pp. 422–34.

[36] Pham, P.N., Vinck, P. and Weinstein, H.M. (2010) Human rights, transitional justice, public health and social reconstruction. Social Science & Medicine, 70 (1): 98–105.

[37] Kinyarwandan for ‘Justice on the grass’.

[38] Corey, A. & Joireman, S.F. (2004) Retributive Justice: The Gacaca courts in Rwanda, African Affairs, 103: 73-89.

[39] It ought to be noted that challenges have been raised as to how ‘restorative’ the gacaca process really is, see: (ibid.).

[40] (ibid.)

[41] (ibid.)

[42] Given the stigma associated with having done such a thing and the fact that this data was provided by testimony of the former child soldiers, the actual value is probably higher.

[43] Bayer, C.P., Klasen, F. and Adam, H. (2007) Association of trauma and PTSD symptoms with openness to reconciliation and feelings of revenge among former Ugandan and Congolese child soldiers. Journal of the American Medical Association, 298 (5): 555–559.

[44] Kaminer et al (2001), The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa.

[45] Silove (1999), The psychosocial effects of torture.

[46] Petersen & Zuckerman (2010), Anger, Violence and Political Science.

[47] (ibid.)

[48] See, for instance, Stearns, F.R. (1972) Anger: Psychology, physiology, pathology, Oxford: Charles C. Thomas.

[49] Rees, S., Silove, D., Verdial, T., et al. (2013) Intermittent explosive disorder amongst women in conflict affected Timor-Leste: associations with human rights trauma, ongoing violence, poverty, and injustice. PloS one, 8 (8): e69207.

[50] Rees et al (2013), Intermittent explosive disorder amongst women in post-conflict Timor-Leste.

[51] Brooks et al (2011), Explosive anger in post-conflict Timor-Leste.

[52] Silove et al (2009), Explosive anger in post-conflict Timor-Leste.

[53] (ibid.)

[54] Rees et al (2013), Intermittent explosive disorder amongst women in post-conflict Timor-Leste.

[55] Brooks et al (2011), Explosive anger in post-conflict Timor-Leste.

[56] Silove et al (2009), Explosive anger in post-conflict Timor-Leste.

[57] (ibid.)

[58] Rees et al (2013), Intermittent explosive disorder amongst women in post-conflict Timor-Leste.

[59] UNDP (2010), Capacity Development in Post-Conflict Countries.

[60] See, for instance, Miller, K.E. & Rasmussen, A. (2010) War exposure, daily stressors, and mental health in conflict and post-conflict settings: Bridging the divide between trauma-focused and psychosocial frameworks, Social Science & Medicine, 70: 7-16.

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Alexander Miller Tate was, until recently, an undergraduate at The University of Birmingham studying Political Science and Philosophy. In his final year he was a founding co-editor of The New Birmingham Review, an interdisciplinary undergraduate journal of critical social thought. His undergraduate dissertation examined theories of human wellbeing as they are applied to critical theories of politics and society. He is now studying for a Master’s degree in Philosophy at The University of Edinburgh. His main research interests involve the philosophical investigation of mental illness, emotion and cognition, as well as more general issues in Epistemology and the Philosophy of Science.

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3 thoughts on “The Effects of War-Related Mental Health Issues on Post-Conflict Reconciliation and Transitional Justice

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