Our long-awaited issue of Humanity journal is out! Its special dossier, Iran under Sanctions, examines the myriad and devastating impacts of international sanctions on society, culture, and politics. The issue includes an essay on the legal case Herero and Nama v. The Federal Republic of Germany to theorize reparations for German colonialism and slavery as they became linked with the aftermath of the Shoah. It also includes essays on T.H. Marshall and the right of access to justice; visual representations of Armenian genocide survivors; and, the concept of radical friendship in relation to the Farmers’ Protests in India.



Global Citizenship and the Right of Access to Justice: Adapting T.H. Marshall’s Ideas to the Interconnected World

Abstract: The right of access to justice is both procedural and substantive in nature. It is procedural because it guarantees availability of certain recourse mechanisms, not necessarily limited to a purely judicial route. It is also a substantive entitlement allowing for the enforcement of the idea of justice as fairness in each unique factual context. The right of access to justice as an attribute of the emerging global citizenship denotes our shared understanding that accountability comes in many forms and shapes, which are becoming gradually Read More »

Defying the Humanitarian Gaze: Visual Representation of Genocide Survivors in the Eastern Mediterranean

Abstract: This article is a critical encounter with the genre of humanitarian photography through the case study of images of women survivors of the Armenian Genocide. Viewing photographs taken as part of the American humanitarian campaign in the Eastern Mediterranean, the article exposes the universalizing modality of humanitarian photography while exposing mass atrocities as perpetuating the silencing of victims by reducing them to symbols of suffering. Through an indexical, forensic, and critical fabulatory engagement with the humanitarian photograph, the article aims to unsettle the universalized Read More »

German Colonialism in the Courtroom— Law, Reparation, and the Grammars of the Shoah

Abstract: In the quest to address the lingering consequences of colonialism and slavery, activists and human rights practitioners have increasingly utilized legal channels. This article focuses on the Ovaherero and Nama people’s pursuit of reparations from Germany in hearings held in New York between 2017 and 2019. It explores the historical conditions for bringing such a case in the United States, arguing that the 1990s economy-focused Holocaust Restitution Movement is a crucial backdrop. The argument examines the implications of applying this ‘thefticide’ framework to a Read More »

Seva as Radical Friendship: On Foucault, Spirituality, and the Farmers’ Protest

Abstract: The Farmers’ Protest is now recognised as the longest protest movement in history and should concern everyone who eats. In this article, I examine how legal rights failed the farmers and how, to survive the year and a half long protest, they practiced a way of life that performed a relational right to nourishment. Through using concepts from radical Sikhi, namely seva and langar, I show how an ethics of seva produced radical friendship at sites of protest that countered state abandonment and neglect, Read More »

Introduction: Studying the Impacts of Economic Sanctions in Iran: Everyday Life, Power, and Foreign Policy

The most-sanctioned country in the world, Iran has been under continuous Western (predominantly US) sanctions for four decades. Sanctions are a historical process in Iran—indeed, throughout the Middle East and increasingly in other regions of the world. It is now nearly impossible to analyze contemporary societies in Iran, the wider Middle East, certain parts of Africa and Latin America, and increasingly Russia and China, without considering the multilayered impacts of economic sanctions. While the United States, wary of traditional warfare after its experiences in the Read More »

Entangled Lives: Enduring Under Sanctions

Abstract: This essay explores international sanctions as a technology of global governmentality. I explore the enduring effects of decades of international sanctions against Iran on the individuals who experience them daily. As a backdrop to understanding the experiences of the civilian populations on the receiving end of sanctions, I begin with an examination of the historical relationship between the sanctioning of recalcitrant states and the uses of global economy. In this context, sanctions serve as instruments of political coercion and technologies of power, which, in Read More »

Art at the Border: Sanctions and the Visual Arts of Iran

Abstract: This article enumerates the myriad direct and indirect consequences of sanctions on the visual arts. The author draws on ten years of research on the circulation of Iranian art through international exhibitions and the global art market, particularly in the geographies of the United Arab Emirates, Europe and the USA, a time period that encompasses both the Obama-era sanctions on Iran as well as the Trump-era sanctions. Technically, artworks fall under the category of “information and informational materials” and are not under sanction. Yet, Read More »

Depleted Households: “Domesticating” Economic Sanctions

Abstract: Premised on the consideration of the household as a key site of social reproduction, where the dislocating effects of sanctions and austerity are felt, this article explores the impact of the Trump administration’s 2018 reimposition of punitive sanctions on Iran. The focus on the household, and the myriads of mundane everyday acts which sustain and reproduce it, renders central the study of gender relations and the gendered character of social reproduction. Drawing on the experiences of middle-class women in Tehran, I focus on the Read More »

Iran in Latin America: Building Alliances for Busting Economic Sanctions

Abstract: Based on fieldwork over ten years in Iran and Cuba, this article follows the myriad political, economic, and cultural, relationships developed between Iran, Venezuela, and Cuba since 2008, as a direct challenge to U.S. sanctions on all three countries. What can we learn about U.S. sanctions when we look at the lived experiences of those both coping with and defying U.S. sanctions in three of the main targeted societies? What do these alliances of sanctions busting show us about the limits of U.S. sanctions, Read More »