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Human Development and Political Violence presents an innovative approach to research and practice with young people growing up in the context of political violence. Based on developmental theory, this book explains and illustrates how children and youth interact with environments defined by war, armed conflict, and the aftermath involving displacement, poverty, political instability, and personal loss. The case study for this inquiry was a research workshop in four countries of the former Yugoslavia, where youth aged 12 to 27 participated in activities designed to promote their development. The theory-based Dynamic Story-Telling by Youth workshop engaged participants as social historians and critics sharing their experiences via narratives, evaluations of society, letters to public officials, debates, and collaborative inquiries. Analyses of these youth perspectives augment archival materials and researcher field notes to offer insights about developmental strategies for dealing with the threats and opportunities of war and major political change.
Colette Daiute is Professor of Psychology and Head of the Ph.D. Program in Developmental Psychology at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. She has published widely on social development, international issues in child and youth development, uses of literacy and technology, and qualitative research methods. Previous book publications include Writing and Computers (1985), The Development of Literacy through Social Interaction (1993), Narrative Analysis: Studying the Development of Individuals in Society (2004, co-editor C. Lightfoot), and International Perspectives on Youth Conflict and Development (2006, co-editors Z. Beykont, C. Higson-Smith, L. Nucci). Daiute has received numerous research grant awards from organizations including the United States Institute of Peace, the Spencer Foundation, the William T. Grant Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Council of Teachers of English, Harvard University, and the U.S. government. She has also been invited to lecture internationally, most recently at the University of Warwick (UK), the University of Zagreb (Croatia), the University of Belgrade (Serbia), and the University of Manizales (Colombia).