Presentation and discussion with editors Gunnar M. Sørbø (CMI) andAbdel Ghaffar M. Ahmed (University of Khartoum). 


The secession of South Sudan in July 2011 took place against the backdrop of the Arab Spring, spurring hopes of a "new beginning" that might lead to a more just, democratic Sudan. Nonetheless, the years following secession have witnessed new wars, growing unrest, and renewed calls for the removal of the Islamist regime in Khartoum. The bookSudan Divided: Continuing Conflict in a Contested State (2013) examines how the Islamist project has shaped developments in Sudan, with a particular focus on how divisive policies at the local and regional levels have created growing regional subcultures of ethnic violence and fragmentation - as well as renewed struggles to fight continued marginalization.

Gunnar M. Sørbø is Senior Researcher and former Director (1994-2010) of the Chr Michesen Institute (CMI), Norway. Before joining CMI, he was i.a. Chair of the Department of Social Anthropology and Director of the Center for Development Studies, University of Bergen. A social anthropologist by profession, Sørbø has been involved in collaborative research and capacity building programs with Sudanese universities for more than 40 years.

Abdel Ghaffar M. Ahmed is Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of Khartoum, Professor in Development Studies at Ahfad University for Women, and affiliated Senior Researcher at Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI), Norway. His previous appointments include being Director of the Economic and Social Research Council in Sudan (1976- 1977), Dean at the Juba University, South Sudan (1977- 1978), Director of the Development Studies and Research Centre at the University of Khartoum, and Executive Secretary of OSSREA - the Organization for Social Science Research in Eastern and Southern Africa (1992-2002).