Degree Name

MA in Conflict Transformation

First Advisor

Tatsushi Arai


Since its independence in 1975 the Union of Comoros has seen a great deal of political upheaval as a part of its decolonization process. This study examines the period between 1975 and 2001 with special emphasis on the 1997 Secession Crisis and the methods by which that crisis was resolved. The literature review is composed of predominantly native Comorian authors, supplemented by several French authors and information from international organizations. The events and literature are also examined through the lenses of the psychoanalytical group identity theory of Vamik Volkan and the Conflict Transformation work of Johan Galtung. Data regarding attitudes and general knowledge of this period in Comorian history was obtained through a qualitative study conducted with forty participants from across Comoros. The findings suggested that the majority of responses from the island of Anjoaun showed a greater knowledge and personal connection to the events of 1997, while many Grande Comoriens were either not aware of or had forgotten about the crisis. The findings also indicated that Anjoaunese participants were more likely to believe there was a tension or conflict between the islands than their Grande Comorien counterparts. The literature review findings indicated that Comoros is in a period of relative political stability and has begun the establishing political norms regarding free and fair elections which can be directly attributed to the 2001 Constitution.

Keywords: Comoros, Grande Comore, Moheli, Anjouan, Mayotte, France, constitutional reform, Fomboni Accords, Group Identity theory


African Studies | International Relations | Other International and Area Studies | Other Psychology