The concept of violence is highly problematic, with perceptions of what it is varying across time, between cultures and between different groups. Representations of growing violence in the Melanesian countries need to be looked at in the light of the enormous diversity within and between particular countries and their different histories. The broader context of rapid and pervasive change and its impacts on older practices of self-regulation are an important part of understanding the nature of current concerns in the region. State-making in societies lacking traditions of an overarching polity is itself often a violent process. While there are no easy solutions, there is a need to move beyond the focus on symptoms to analysis of the various and complex social, economic and political processes that underlie them. There is also much to be learnt from informal forms of Melanesian conflict resolution and the manner in which these can be articulated with more encompassing formal systems.
|Journal||Pacific Economic Bulletin|
|Publication status||Published - 1999|