Surviving Disorder: Children, Violence and War Stories in Liberia

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


I argue that war stories narrated by children affected by war convey not only truths or partial truths; the process of their narration, compilation and presentation can offer insights into children's perceptions of how their lives have changed because of the war and their application of self- reflection in the process. In this sense, war itself becomes an episode in the 'otherization' of the self: telling war stories that reflect abnormal, powerful, imaginary and thrilling experiences helps an individual present him-or herself in a different light by invoking virtues of heroism, courage and survival. In this sense, sharing war stories, is more than storytelling. It also involves the creation of a particular type of self-image, that privileges children's agency and capacity for self-reflection.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChildren Affected by Armed Conflict: Theory, Method and Practice
EditorsMyriam Denov, Bree Akeeson
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherColumbia University Press
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)978-0-231-17473-2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017


  • War Stories
  • Children
  • Agency


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