Conscientious Objection: Resisting Militarized Society – the book

Conscientious Objection: Resisting Militarized Society
Edited by Ozgur Heval Cinar and Coskun Usterci

Refusing to take part in war is as old as war itself. This wide-ranging and original book brings together four different bodies of knowledge to examine the pratice of conscientious objection: historical and philosophical analyses of conscientious objection as a critique of compulsory military service and militarization; feminist, LGBT and queer analyses of conscientious objection as a critique of patriarchy, sexism, and heterosexism; activist and academic analyses of conscientious objection as a social movement and individual act of resistance; legal analyses of the status of conscientious objection in international and national law.

Conscientious objection is an increasingly important subject of academic and political debate in countries including the US, Israel and Turkey. This book provides a much needed introduction and tool for making sense of the history of nation-states in the 20th century and understanding the political developments of the early 21st century.

Published by Zed Books

The book will be available at the exhibition of COnscription at the Old Truman Brewery in May


‘This Turkish-oriented comparative study of conscientious objection to military service is illuminating, while exhibiting the courage of morally motivated individuals who defy coercive governments. In essence, this fine multi-authored volume challenges readers to assess the nature of good citizenship in the 21st Century.’ – Richard Falk, Professor, Princeton University.

‘The world’s hundreds of thousands of conscientious objectors to military labour come alive in this volume, and not simply as figures of moral conscience. They are also revealed as symptoms and powerful critiques of militarism and the diverse problems it both feeds and draws on, including nationalism, patriarchy and class inequality, and racialism.’ – Catherine Lutz, Professor, Brown University.

‘I wish I had had this book decades ago when I first found my way to conscientious objection and ultimately to draft resistance. It is far and away the best book I have seen on the subject. Çinar and Üsterci have conceived and assembled a remarkable and appropriately complex resource about freedom and resistance to militarism. For those of us whose experience and knowledge of conscientious objection and war resistance are limited to the West; Çinar, Üsterci and the authors they have assembled provide a universal and critical overview of the many ways conscientious objection – a life and humanity affirming rejection of nationalism, militarism, and patriarchal male warrior roles – has developed and grown around the world. Given Turkey’s pivotal role in the 21st century world disorder, I especially appreciated their Turkish lens, which illuminates the culture and structures of Turkish militarism and the roles that conscientious objection is playing in creating a more democratic and non-militarist nation. An important book for scholars and activists alike.’ – Joseph Gerson, Director, American Friends Service Committee.

‘At last a book on conscientious objection to military service from the point of view of contemporary objectors … it expresses the critique objection poses to patriarchy and social militarization and firmly places objection in the context of struggle for social transformation.’ – Howard Clark, chairperson, War Resisters’ International

Source: Zed Books


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