Marc Opper’s research focuses on the etiology, conduct, and outcome of internal conflicts with a focus on the micro-level interactions between civilians and armed groups. He specializes in the politics and society of China and of the Chinese diaspora in Southeast Asia, as well as the politics and history of the Vietnam War. His current book project, Fighting the People, Fighting for the People: Insurgent Governance and Conflict Outcomes in China, Malaya, and Vietnam makes extensive use of primary sources to examine the relationship between the institutions established by armed insurgent groups and the outcomes of internal conflicts. His research seeks combine social science with history and area studies to produce work that appreciates and embraces local contexts while producing generally-applicable theoretical insights into social and political phenomena. In addition to his book project, he is also working on separate projects that analyze resource extraction by the Chinese Communist Party in the 1930’s and 1940’s, the formal legal systems of insurgent organizations, and the role of local elections in civil wars. While at Yale, in addition to conducting research, he will be teaching an undergraduate seminar, “Contemporary State-Building in Asia.”
EAST 404, PLSC 396
Contemporary State Building in Asia
Consideration of the legacies of war and revolution in China, Vietnam, Malaysia, and other areas of Southeast Asia. Exploration of the process and consequences of political strategies in wartime and the establishment of political institutions, with empirical focus on the Chinese Revolution and how the legacies of that conflict shaped the modern Chinese state.