Conflict and parenting in Burundi

TitleConflict and parenting in Burundi
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsL.H. Berckmoes
EditorH. Selin
Secondary TitleParenting across cultures childrearing, motherhood and fatherhood in non-Western cultures
Series titleScience across cultures: the history of non-Western science
Date Published2022
Place PublishedCham
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number978-3-031-15358-7
KeywordsBurundi, parenting

In this chapter I explore how conflict as a contextual stressor interacts with parenting in Burundi, a country affected by repeated outbreaks of mass violence since Independence. Interested in understanding how these conflict experiences inform cultural understandings of what good parenting amounts to and how parenting may seek to prepare next generations for better futures, I conducted ethnographic research in 2014 and 2015 in Bujumbura, Burundi. Findings show how the enduring effects of conflict lead many parents to feel unable to pursue their culturally desired parenting goals, which largely continue to be framed with reference to goals and practices of precolonial, rural society. Parents describe current family and parenting practices in terms of “adaptation” to postwar poverty and hostility. Much to parents’ unease, however, these adaptations may augment experiences of abandonment and neglect, especially among the most vulnerable children.

Citation Key12011