Bose, Sumantra 1968-

views updated

BOSE, Sumantra 1968-


Born 1968, in India. Education: Amherst College, B.A., 1992; Columbia University, M.A., M.Phil, and Ph.D., 1998.


Office—London School of Economics, Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE, England. E-mail—[email protected].


London School of Economics, London, England, lecturer in comparative politics, 1999—; visiting professor at Wellesley College, Wellesley, MA, and Bogazici University, Istanbul, Turkey. Consultant to U.S. State Department and British Department for International Development; has appeared as an analyst on CNN International and the British Broadcasting Company (BBC).


Grants from Social Science Research Council and Nuffield Foundation.


States, Nations, Sovereignty: Sri Lanka, India, and the Tamil Eelam Movement, Sage Publications (Thousand Oaks, CA), 1994.

The Challenge in Kashmir: Democracy, Self-Determination, and a Just Peace, Sage Publications (Thousand Oaks, CA), 1996.

Bosnia after Dayton: Nationalist Partition and International Intervention, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 2002.

Kashmir: Roots of Conflict, Paths to Peace, Harvard University Press (Cambridge, MA), 2003.

Contributor of chapters to anthologies, including Ending Civil Wars: The Implementation of Peace Agreements, Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2002; International Interventions in the Balkans since 1995, Routledge, 2003; and Freedom in the World 2003, Freedom House, 2003; contributor of articles to various scholarly periodicals, including Security Dialogue, Development, and Survival.


Sumantra Bose is a political scientist who studies those regions plagued by civil wars during the second half of the twentieth century, particularly Sri Lanka, Kashmir, and Bosnia. His books have been noted for combining historical exposition and political theorizing alongside eye-witness accounts and interviews with average people who have been affected by the conflicts. This is particularly apparent in Bose's study Bosnia after Dayton: Nationalist Partition and International Intervention. Bill Hayton of International Affairs stated, "in several places, theoretical points are illustrated by tales of drinking with militiamen in frontline bars."

Two of Bose's books, The Challenge in Kashmir: Democracy, Self-Determination, and a Just Peace as well as Kashmir: Roots of Conflict, Paths to Peace, are about the oft-disputed, theoretically autonomous province in northwestern India that is also coveted by Pakistan. Although reviewers noted a difference in tone between the two works, they praised them both. In The Challenge in Kashmir, Bose "writes to redress wrongs [and] to effect change," Ian Copland explained in the Australian Journal of Political Science. "In lesser hands," Copland continued, "this book could easily have degenerated into an angry diatribe," but instead it "offers probably the most penetrating and thoughtful account of the 1989 insurgency to have appeared so far."

On the other hand, in Kashmir, Bose "restrains himself from adjudicating grievances in favor of exploring an exit from the impasse," noted Booklist's Gilbert Taylor. His proposed peace plan is based on the Good Friday accords signed in Northern Ireland in 1998, whereby the most difficult questions are put off until a future date while the two parties work to build trust by resolving less contentious issues first. Library Journal critic John F. Riddick found Bose's analysis hopeful, further commenting that "his statement shows evidence of careful, detailed research, and his thoughtful prose clarifies a subject of infinite complexity."



Australian Journal of Political Science, November, 1997, Ian Copland, review of The Challenge in Kashmir: Democracy, Self-Determination, and a Just Peace, pp. 477-478.

Booklist, September 1, 2003, Gilbert Taylor, review of Kashmir: Roots of Conflict, Paths to Peace, p. 48.

International Affairs, January, 2003, Bill Hayton, review of Bosnia after Dayton: Nationalist Partition and International Intervention, pp. 205-206.

Library Journal, August, 2003, John F. Riddick, review of Kashmir, p. 106.

National Interest, fall, 2003, Gordon N. Bardos, review of Bosnia after Dayton, pp. 128-134.

Times Higher Education Supplement, January 30, 2004, Gurharpal Singh, review of Kashmir, pp. 28-29.

Times Literary Supplement, February 14, 2003, Mark Mazower, review of Bosnia after Dayton, pp. 6-7.


London School of Economics Web site, (June 15, 2004), "Dr. Sumantra Bose."*

About this article

Bose, Sumantra 1968-

Updated About content Print Article