I am a PhD candidate in comparative politics and international relations in the Yale Department of Political Science, graduating in 2023, and a United States Institute of Peace (USIP) Peace Scholar. I study violence, ideology, and socialization with a focus on qualitative methods. I am on the job market this cycle.
My first book project, entitled the "Ideological Socialization of Civilians During Civil War" examines the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia's (FARC) socialization of civilians up until the group's 2016 peace accord with the government. Drawing on literature on ideological domination, rebel governance, and the legacies of war, I ask under what conditions this socialization changed civilians' political ideas. I draw on months of ethnographic work in former FARC areas, interviews with experts and ex-combatants, and surveys of Colombian civilians to identify variation in FARC socialization practices and their subsequent effects on civilian political ideas. My theory identifies the conditions under which socialization is most likely to happen in the first place and then the conditions that lead to socialization success.
I have one solo-authored published paper, which compares India's Naxalites and Peru's Shining Path, asking under what conditions armed groups are likely to socialize civilians. The article appears in Civil Wars. A working paper, co-authored with Andrés Aponte and Andres Uribe, constructs a novel dataset of armed group territorial control in Colombia from 2000-2016, and inductively examines the relationship between territorial control and violence against civilians (R&R at the Journal of Conflict Resolution). A second paper, co-authored with Deepika Padmanabhan, studies the political dynamics of Tamil film, asking both how audiences interact with political messages in film, and then experimentally tests the power of each of our theorized causal pathways.
I hold a B.A. from Swarthmore College in Peace and Conflict Studies and an M.A. and an MPhil from the Yale Political Science Department. I have previously been a visiting researcher at the Centro de Investigación y Educación Popular/Programa por la Paz in Bogotá, Colombia.
I can be reached at daniel.hirschel-burns at yale dot edu. I'm on Twitter under the handle @DHirschelBurns