2 Books on Geopolitics: Protesting Jordan / Violence and Representation in the Arab Uprisings
Date(s) - 03/21/2023
New York City
NEW YORK CITY, NY
Benoit Challand (associate professor, Sociology) and Jill Schwedler (professor, Politics, CUNY Graduate Center) will engage in exploring the theoretical foundations and political manifestations of radical democratic and anti-colonial traditions and discuss the politics of space and mobilization, as well as the impact of informal politics in the Arab Middle East, before, during and after the Arab uprisings of 2011.
The two authors will discuss each other’s books:
Protesting Jordan: Geographies of Power and Dissent, Jillian Schwedler
Protest has been a key method of political claim-making in Jordan from the late Ottoman period to the present day. More than moments of rupture within normal-time politics, protests have been central to challenging state power, as well as reproducing it—and the spatial dynamics of protests play a central role in the construction of both state and society. Based on twenty-five years of field research, Protesting Jordan examines protests as they are situated in the built environment, bringing together considerations of networks, spatial imaginaries, space and place-making, and political geographies at local, national, regional, and global scales. Schwedler considers the impact of time and temporality in the lifecycles of individual movements.
Violence and Representation in the Arab Uprisings, Benoit Challand
Providing a longue durée perspective on the Arab uprisings of 2011, Benoît Challand narrates the transformation of citizenship in the Arab Middle East, from a condition of latent citizenship in the colonial and post-independence era to the revolutionary dynamics that stimulated democratic participation. Considering the parallel histories of citizenship in Yemen and Tunisia, Challand develops innovative theories of violence and representation that view cultural representations as calls for a decentralized political order and democratic accountability over the security forces. He argues that a new collective imaginary emerged in 2011 when the people represented itself as the only legitimate power able to decide when violence ought to be used to protect all citizens from corrupt power. Shedding light upon uprisings in Yemen and Tunisia, but also elsewhere in the Middle East, this book offers deeper insights into conceptions of violence, representation, and democracy.