The Devil's Work

in The Culture of Sectarianism

Published by University of California Press

Published in print July 2000 | ISBN: 9780520218451
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520922792 | DOI:
The Devil's Work

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This chapter narrates how the elites of Mount Lebanon repeatedly and desperately tried to regain the initiative from the mobilized populace as the war proceeded, and how they finally succeeded in reconstituting the social order after the fighting ended in Mount Lebanon. It concentrates on certain moments of violence that cast light on the nature and contradictions of sectarianism. The chapter aims to highlight the social tension inherent in the religious strife, not simply across communal boundaries but within them as well. It also aims to unsettle the pretension of homogeneity and solidity of communal identity that the term sectarianism implies. The chapter notes that the war of 1860 was an attempt to resolve the contradictions of and the fears engendered by the conflicting sectarian imaginations let loose on the land after the restoration of Ottoman rule in 1840.

Keywords: elites; Mount Lebanon; war; social order; religious strife; sectarianism; Ottoman rule

Chapter.  12657 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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