The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Ardeshir Pezeshk

Professional Title: 

Graduate Student and Ph.D. Candidate


Thompson 628


Office Hours: 

Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1300-1430


2012. M.A. Political Science, San Diego State University; 2007. B.A. Political Science, San Francisco State University


I am currently an ABD Ph.D Candidate. My main field of study is international relations but my interest in what shapes the use, utility, and limits of political violence, particularly against civilians, has resulted in a deep engagement with the field of comparative politics. My research focuses on the effect(s) of the civilian immunity norm on warring party behavior. I also very much enjoy working with students as both an Instructor and Teaching Assistant. My goal as an instructor is to help students identify and adjudicate truth claims about the world and how it works. 


My dissertation focuses on the effect(s) of the civilian immunity norm on warring party behavior. Distinguishing between the civilian immunity norm and international humanitarian law protecting civilians from deliberate violence and disentangling claims about norm effects from norm effectiveness, my dissertation examines various norm effects including regulative, constitutive, and permissive effects on Taliban treatment of civilians. My dissertation also seeks to identify the mechanism(s) by which the civilian immunity norm has these varied effects, pointing to increased prominence of protecting civilians in the international normative environment and the UNAMA as a communicator of both what the norm entails and the weight afforded to it.