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Title: Domination and resistance in liberal settler colonialism : Palestinians in Israel between the homeland and the transnational
Author: Tatour, Lana
ISNI:       0000 0004 6423 0104
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis explores native resistance to settler colonialism through its focus on the ’48 Palestinians (also known as the Palestinian citizens of Israel). It innovatively brings together postcolonial theory and settler colonial studies to explore the racialised, ethnicised, gendered and sexualised dimensions of settler colonial violence, how these shape native modalities of resistance and subordination, and the ways in which the transnational is imbricated within these processes. The thesis undertakes two case studies – on the Palestinian Bedouin struggle for land rights and on the Palestinian queer movement – drawing upon archival research, other primary texts and ethnographic exploration. The case studies are interrogated in relation to the liberal-nationalist framework that dominates ’48 Palestinian discourse and resistance. The thesis radically critiques the frameworks of ethnocracy, ethnonationalism and minority studies that have been most prevalent in earlier research on ’48 Palestinians. Instead, this study builds on an understanding of resistance as diagnostic of power (Abu-Lughod 1990). It argues that the resistance of Palestinians in Israel is diagnostic of the structure of Israel as a liberal settler state, and unfolds in relation to the liminal positionality of ’48 Palestinians between (semi)liberal citizenship and colonial subjecthood. It further argues that the subjectivities and modalities of resistance of ’48 Palestinians are shaped through the racialising logics of settler colonialism, and the intersectionalities of these logics with ethnicity, gender and sexuality. Through the focus in the two case studies on indigeneity (and the fetishisation of the indigenous subject as premodern) and LGBT rights (and the folding of queer subjects into modernity), the thesis further suggests that the resistance of ’48 Palestinians is also shaped in complex and ambivalent ways by their ongoing encounters with the liberal frameworks of multiculturalism and human rights. The case studies illuminate that while these frameworks can serve as vehicles for empowerment, they can also reproduce the racialising logics of settler colonialism and further its entrenchment. This means that ’48 Palestinians constantly (re)negotiate their identities, their struggles and their political agendas within multiple circuits of power. The ambivalence of the encounter with the liberal settler state, as inclusionary and exclusionary, and human rights, as empowering and oppressive, produces native resistance to settler colonialism to be shaped and reshaped by competing political projects and hybrid modalities of resistance that include practices of self-essentialising, Bhabian notions of resistance as subversion, and a Fanonian politics of rejection as both pedagogy and a political imperative. The thesis concludes that the mobilisation of a more radical vision of decolonisation requires transcendence of both liberal settler colonialism and the liberal politics of human rights.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: DS Asia ; JZ International relations