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This book is a product of a research project called ‘voices of youth’ carried out - page 15 / 125





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A Lost Generation: Young People and Conflict in Africa

short supply, and where young people are in competition with the more established interests of adults. Second, the prevalence of gender-based violence during and after violent conflict, and the consequences this has for the survivors, their children, and their communities.

The research explores four main hypotheses, which are largely confirmed by the evidence. Firstly, that young people experience a wide variety of forms of discrimination at the hands of adults, including those with a duty of care. The second is that the power relationships which make this discrimination possible are rooted in culturally sanctioned ideologies in which youth are, at one and the same time, both infantilised and demonised. Thirdly, that discrimination against young people operates at all levels – within their own communities, amongst local and national institutions such as employers, schools, and the police, and amongst intervention agencies, both local and international. And finally, that there is a lamentable absence of post-war initiatives addressing the needs of young people, and more specifically that address the needs of young girls and child mothers.

There are two sections to this book.

What You Will Find In Section One

Section one presents the results of the research. The first chapter in this section is the introduction followed by a discussion of the research methodology. Chapter two describes the research process in its different stages and the approaches used. It focuses on two notable aspects of the methodology, namely the use of Social Exclusion Analysis as an overall framework of analysis, and Oral Testimony as a research method. In keeping with the aims of ‘Restoring Peace Project’, the research exercise was carried out by country teams which included young people from the communities concerned, both to enhance the accuracy of its analysis and to ensure young people’s access to the relevant skills. The chapter attempts to draw lessons from the ‘Voices of Youth’ experience on the appropriateness of these methods to the contexts concerned. By way of illustration, the annexes following section two present some of the intermediate forms of analysis used by the different research

teams. This includes material drawn from a third study, practical reasons could not be presented as a case study.

in Angola, which for

The substantive chapters of part one consist of case studies from Burundi and


These are based mainly on testimony, supported by supplementary

interviews (including key informant interviews and focus group discussions) and secondary material. Both these case studies focus on the particular experiences

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