War and Society

This course explores the complex and multidimensional relationship between war and its lifeworld. It asks questions about the relationship between various societal structures and trends, and evolving modes and logics of war.

The course is organised around five spheres of contemporary society and social life:

  • law and ethics;
  • policing and social ordering;
  • architecture and design;
  • ecology and climate;
  • media and tourism.

Questions discussed include ‘what is the relationship between architecture and war? What role do policing logics play in war? How does climate change affect warfare?’

Students are introduced to some of the most influential critical theoretical work on contemporary Western warfare. Throughout, attention is paid to the mutually constitutive relationship between societal phenomena and structures, and war. Students will become attuned to the ways in which war and society are imbricated with one another, and develop requisite tools to unpack the relationship between war and society.


Dr. Caroline Holmqvist is a Senior Lecturer in War Studies. She has published Policing Wars: On Military Intervention in the Twenty-First Century (2014); War, Police and Assemblages of Intervention (co-ed. 2014); and The Character of War in the 21st Century (co-ed. 2010), as well as numerous articles and book chapters on contemporary modes and technologies of war.

Previous appointments include: Visiting Researcher at Tel Aviv University (2018-2020); Eric Remacle Chair in Peace Studies, Université libre de Bruxelles (2015-2016) and Visiting Researcher, Centre for International Studies, London School of Economics and Political Science (2011-2013).