Natalia Fanjul (@nmarsicovetere), MSc Social and Cultural Psychology
I was born and raised in Guatemala, where I completed my undergraduate in General Psychology in 2016. I worked for two years in human rights advocacy at a local NGO before being awarded the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office Chevening Scholarship to do the LSE Social and Cultural Psychology MSc. Currently, I am focused in the topics of political psychology and conflict, particularly applied in the field of human rights in Latin America.
Caught in the crossfire: Colombian conflict victims’ representation of peace, conflict and violence.
Supervisor: Sandra Jovchelovitch
From the 1960’s until the peace agreement in 2016, Colombia endured an internal war fought among guerrillas, paramilitary groups and the army. The last two decades were characterised by a humanitarian crisis with a large number of civilian casualties, and the violence continues to extend even after the peace treaty was signed, evidencing a gap in the recuperation of the torn social fabric. This research proposes the utilisation of Moscovici’s (1963) theory to explore the social representations of peace, violence and conflict of civilian victims in this time period, with the aim of informing post-conflict reconciliation and recovery processes. For this purpose, testimonials of civilian victims affected by conflict violence from 1995 to 2016 (n=50) were collected from publicly available sources, including the National Centre for Historic Memory online archive. These were analysed using Thematic Analysis. Key findings show that participants’ identities as victims shape these social representations, associating the conflict with loss, peace with their good past, and reconciliation with the recovery of this good life they lost. The implications of these findings resonate with past research and provide valuable insights from the voices of victims to improve peace and reconciliation procedures.