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Doctoral StudentComparative Politics and International Relations
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Christopher Sullivan is a PhD Candidate in Political Science at the University of Michigan and Pre-Doctoral Fellow at Yale’s Program on Order Conflict and Violence. He holds an M.A from the University of Notre Dame and from Maryland as well as an M.S. from Vrije Universitiet, Amsterdam. He served as Managing Editor of The Journal of Conflict Resolution from 2008-2013 and has held a number of grants and fellowships from, among others, the National Science Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. He published two articles in 2012: “Blood in the Village: Local Level Determinants of State Massacres” Conflict Management and Peace Science. 29(4): 373-396 and “The Coercive Weight of the Past: Temporal Dependence in the Conflict-Repression Nexus” International Interactions. 38(4):426-442 (with Cyanne Loyle and Christian Davenport). Sullivan’s dissertation, “Undermining Resistance: Mobilization, Repression and the Enforcement of Political Order,” examines the use of political repression in Guatemala from 1975-1985. Three intricately related questions are investigated: why do governments repress their citizens; what impact does repression have on citizen decisions to engage in dissent; and when does repression end. The project develops a novel theory of government repression that focuses specifically on attempts by authorities to undermine overt collective challenges, such as protest or terrorism, by targeting activities that precede and/or support such behavior. The investigation provides empirical evidence to support these claims by analyzing new data collected from the confidential records of Guatemalan National Police. Analysis of the police data reveals how government forces employ coercion to subvert challenges by directing repression against radical mobilization.
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