Outlawry and its History

This post is an advance version of a review essay that will appear in Humanity volume 10. It will be posted in five parts: one each day this week. This is part 2. Hathaway and Shapiro announce in their introduction that “this book is, at its core, a work of intellectual history” (xx). I am not sure that this does justice to the ambition of their project, which is much larger. In their conclusion, they summarize its essential point as the insight that “the choice Continue reading →

The Rise and Fall of Euro-American Inter-State War: Introduction

This post is an advance version of a review essay that will appear in Humanity volume 10. It will be posted in five parts: one each day this week. The Internationalists: How a Radical Plan to Outlaw War Remade the World Oona A. Hathaway and Scott J. Shapiro New York: Simon & Schuster, 2017. xxii + 430 pp. If one asked a group of historians, political scientists, and lawyers what they would consider the most important single treaty or international agreement of the last two Continue reading →

Capitalists and Climate

A number of the world’s political leaders are currently making a lot of fuss about their business credentials. The President of the United States is a “dealmaker.” The Prime Minister of Australia tells him on the phone that because they are both “businessmen” they understand each other and their “transactional” instincts. In other words, political exchange is not driven by any underlying ideal, but merely a quid pro quo. Although, to tell the truth, Malcolm Turnbull is less a businessman, and more, like the President Continue reading →

CFP: Human Rights Working Paper Series

Dedicated to interdisciplinary and critical dialogue on international human rights law and discourse, the Rapoport Center’s Working Paper Series (WPS) publishes innovative papers by established and early-career researchers as well as practitioners. The goal is to provide a productive environment for debate about human rights among academics, policymakers, activists, practitioners, and the public. Authors from all disciplines and institutions are welcome to submit papers on any topic related to human rights. For the 2017-2018 series, we particularly encourage papers that explore the relationship between labor, Continue reading →

The Transformative Occupations of Palestine

This post appears in conjunction with a dossier on transformative occupations in Humanity issue 8.2 There are two schools of thought on transformative occupations. Adam Scheffer narrowly contrasts it with the international humanitarian law (IHL) concept of belligerent occupation, whose main hallmark is its temporary character.[1] Nehal Bhuta offers a broad historical version, running the gamut from the occupatio bellica of the post-Napoleonic settlement to transformative humanitarian interventions both in the post-WWII and the post-Cold War era, and more recently in Iraq. The 20th century Continue reading →

The Meaning of the 1967 War

This post appears in conjunction with a dossier on transformative occupations in Humanity issue 8.2 In any attempt to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the 1967 war, it is inevitable to reflect on the meaning of Israel’s phenomenal victory and the transformations it brought about to the Middle East. In this regard, much has been written about the profound implications of the 1967 war on Arab world; the fall of Arab nationalism; the rise of Islamic politics; and the consolidation of authoritarian regimes as a way Continue reading →

Transformative Occupations in the Modern Middle East

As guest editors of the dossier on “Transformative Occupations in the Modern Middle East” in the current issue of Humanity, we are delighted that Leila Farsakh and Gershon Shafir each agreed to contribute an introductory meditation on the fiftieth anniversary of the 1967 Arab-Israeli War and the history of the transformative Israeli occupation in Palestine. The dossier, as a unit, builds on the work of the critical legal scholars who have done so much to develop the concept of transformative occupation in the years since Continue reading →

Introduction: Transformative Occupations in the Modern Middle East

This article defines and deploys the concept of transformative occupation to argue for its value in understanding the history of state formation (and prevention) in the Middle East across the twentieth century, during and after imperial and colonial occupation. It argues that socio-political histories of these occupations can in turn refine and extend the heuristic yield of the concept of transformative occupation, for use in other cases globally. The essay also identifies a set of sub-themes that inform our use of the concept: developmental ideologies, Continue reading → Continue reading →

Transformative Relief: Imperial Humanitarianism and Mandatory Development in Syria-Lebanon, 1915–1925

This article shows how emergency humanitarian food relief efforts fitted into the gradual establishment of French imperial occupation in Syria-Lebanon between 1915 and 1925. It argues that we should grasp the years from 1915–1925 as a unit – a distinctively transformative “occupation decade” in the Middle East, as the Ottoman Empire was replaced by the League of Nations Mandate system. It contributes thereby to current debates on the scope and chronology of the First World War. It also engages with a central question in the Continue reading → Continue reading →