HUMANITY VOLUME 13, ISSUE 1
Our latest issue is out! It features a dossier on new histories of the Global South and the UN, essays on the Doc Savage pop culture series and American modernization narratives, the War on Drugs and policing as perpetual violence, and sex work and human rights in North India.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Doc Savage Saves the World: A Pop Culture Origin Story for US Modernization and Development, 1933–1949Abstract: This article contends that important scripts for US-led modernization were trademarked not by political and academic elites of the Cold War era, but rather by low-brow cultural producers of the New Deal period. It pinpoints key characterizations, motivations, plotlines, and settings associated with international development in the long-running pulp magazine series starring “Doc Savage” (1933–1949). Through historical analysis and close readings, the article offers a fresh account of how US audiences came to imagine technical assistance as a proper course for American power while Read More »
Drug Prohibition and the Policing of Warfare: The War on Drugs, Globalization, and the Moralization of Perpetual ViolenceAbstract: This article examines the shifting dynamics between policing and warfare as reflected in the War on Drugs over the twentieth century. Despite the UN’s international drug control treaties being written in language of humanitarianism, the drug prohibition that emerged from these laws exemplifies the growth of “New War.” The drug war, with its violent methods of armed combat, lethal force, incarceration, asset seizure, and land dispossession, was a continuation of familiar warfare. But it also marks a shift away from the traditional structure of Read More »
A New Agenda for the Global South: West Papua, the United Nations, and the Politics of DecolonizationAbstract: This article examines the West Papuan campaign for independence in the lead up to the agreement signed between Indonesia and the Netherlands in 1962, leading to the recolonization of West Papua. West Papuan leaders argued for decolonization separate from Indonesia, based on their interpretations of United Nations principles and claims to a distinct ethnic identity. However, West Papuan claims were rejected because their understanding of self-determination clashed with international norms as well as Cold War and Afro-Asian political imperatives. This case study reveals the Read More »
“Colonialism on trial”: International and Transnational Organizations and the “Global South” Challenges to the Portuguese Empire (1949–1962)Abstract: The United Nations was a dynamic “force field” for international and transnational cooperation and a forum for consequential, transformative interactions between the “West” and the “Global South.” This article focuses on the role played by alliances and solidarity networks, formed by a plurality of actors with diverse agendas, that systematically questioned the Portuguese empire-state’s legitimacy and mobilized the languages of self-determination, human rights, and non-discrimination. As the article concludes, these historical dynamics concurred for important legal and political changes within the Portuguese imperial formation Read More »