Beyond collective violence: capturing context and complexity in Palestinian diasporic resistance

Harris, S. (2017) Beyond collective violence: capturing context and complexity in Palestinian diasporic resistance. Critical Sociology, 43(6), pp. 933-948. (doi: 10.1177/0896920515604474)

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Approximately 50 percent of the world’s Palestinians reside in the diaspora, territorially disconnected from occupied Palestine, but no less part of a population so often associated with political resistance. This article asks: how do Palestinians living in the UK express resistance to the military occupation of their homeland? In what ways are such expressions of resistance shaped by social processes specific to such a context? It makes the case for a more nuanced analysis of resistance amongst Palestinians living in the UK, framed by understandings of (post)colonialism. Through a qualitative analysis of ethnographic interviews with Palestinians residing in Manchester and Edinburgh in 2013, I begin by outlining a postcolonial context in the UK characterized by an Orientalism that Palestinians are forced to negotiate. I then spotlight ‘storytelling’ as an important instance of everyday resistance within (post)colonial settings, suggesting that storytelling might allow Palestinians to negotiate their resistance against the various constraints of life in the UK. The findings challenge notions of ‘violence’ and collectivity traditionally associated with Palestinian resistance, pointing towards a need to reconceptualize everyday diasporic resistance in light of often complex, context-specific interactions.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Harris, Scarlet
Authors: Harris, S.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Journal Name:Critical Sociology
Publisher:SAGE Publications
ISSN (Online):1569-1632
Published Online:23 September 2015
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2015 The Author
First Published:First published in Critical Sociology 43(6): 933-948
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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