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The Growing Phenomenon of Pro-Israeli Advocacy in Chinese Academia

[Image of a graphic that demonstrates the SIGNAL backed ISP zones in China. Image from]

Over the last decade, a network of loosely affiliated pro-Israeli organizations—embracing a number of think tanks, universities, lobbyist groups, foundations, activist-scholars as well as donors—have successfully established a foothold in Chinese academia. The aim of these groups in China has been to provide a platform for espousing hasbara—a Hebrew term for “explanation” denoting the utilization of diplomatic, media, and political mediums to clarify and defend Israel’s positions and actions—that would serve to re-shape Chinese academic perceptions of the Jewish state. The logic underlying this advocacy is that it would eventually influence—given prevailing assumptions ...

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Kenya: On Edge, Rights at Risk

[Image of election campaign posters in Kenya. Image by Global Panorama/Flickr.]

Kenya is in a bad place. Violent attacks from Al-Shabaab, an Islamist group out of Somalia and an Al Qaeda affiliate, and smaller violent attacks and conflicts involving known and unknown sources in rural and urban settings, as well as a rise in general street level crime, have created an insecure, anxious, and deeply divided population. They have also created a problematic context for the protection of democratic rights. Last September Al-Shabaab said it executed the attack on the upscale Westgate Mall in Nairobi causing at least sixty-seven deaths and many injuries. Recently, there were attacks on the small town of Mpeketoni and its environs at the coast with over ...

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Press Release: Librarians and Archivists with Palestine Launches New Website and Solidarity Network

[The following press release was issued by Librarians and Archivists with Palestine on 5 June 2014.] On the 47th anniversary of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, and after 66 years of dispossession of the Palestinian people, a group of librarians and archivists is launching a network of information workers in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for self-determination. In summer 2013, information workers from the U.S., Canada, Sweden, Trinidad & Tobago, and Palestine went to Palestine to connect with colleagues in libraries, archives, and related projects and institutions, in the hopes of gaining mutual benefit through information ...

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New Texts Out Now: Kimberly Wedeven Segall, Performing Democracy in Iraq and South Africa

[Cover of Kimberly Wedeven Segall,

Kimberly Wedeven Segall, Performing Democracy in Iraq and South Africa: Gender, Media, and Resistance. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2013. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Kimberly Wedeven Segall (KWS): The origins of this book began twenty years ago, when I lived for a year in northern Iraq, recording the stories of Kurdish guerrilla fighters and female survivors of the Al-Anfal, while living in Shaqlawa. Many survivors spoke of the role of song, communal dances, and poetry as part of their pathway to cope with their traumatized past, to persevere, to form collective bonds, even in the aftermath of genocide. When the civil war broke out between two ...

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Sharjah Art Foundation's March Project

[Bahraini artist Noor Al Bastaki re-presented the cultures of local communities in Sharjah and Bahrain through the space of the coffee shop. Image courtesy of Medrar TV.]

March Project March - June 2014 Bait Al Shamsi, SAF Art Spaces Sharjah, UAE   The March Project is a group exhibition, showcasing seven newly commissioned, site-specific artworks. The show is the result of an educational residency program for early career artists that the Sharjah Art Foundation launched for the first time at the end of 2013; it opened at SAF Art Spaces in parallel to the annual March Meeting. The residency program aims to offer artists opportunities to research, realize, and present site-specific works through a series of professional development courses, seminars, exhibitions, site visits, and talks led by art practitioners over several ...

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Partha Chatterjee on 'Nationalism, Internationalism, and Cosmopolitanism: Some Lessons from Modern Indian History'

[Logo of the London School of Economics and Political Science. Image from]

On 3 April 2014, Partha Chatterjee gave a lecture on "Nationalism, Internationalism, and Cosmopolitanism: Some Lessons from Modern Indian History" at the London School of Economics. The lecture inaugurated the Internationalism, Cosmopolitanism and the Politics of Solidarity research group convened by Ayça Çubukçu at LSE's Centre for the Study of Human Rights. Below is the audio recording of that event. The lecture deals with four strands of trans-regional political movement in India’s anti-colonial history. The first is that of Islamic jihad which took inspiration from Sayyid Ahmad Barelvi’s campaigns in Sind, Afghanistan and ...

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New Texts Out Now: India: Wounded States (Special Issue of Warscapes)

[Cover of

India: Wounded States. Special issue of Warscapes, edited by Bhakti Shringarpure and Aruni Kashyap. February 2014. Jadaliyya (J): What made you put together this special issue? Warscapes (W): Since the inception of Warscapes we have had a stream of submissions from India that recount experiences of military occupation and state violence in places like Assam and Kashmir. Meanwhile, if you look through the pages of most western mainstream media, as well as Indian outlets, they are projecting a completely different India—shining, burgeoning, economically booming, rapidly globalizing, and staunchly democratic. Within that, Indian literature in English, particularly the ...

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New Texts Out Now: John Tofik Karam, On the Trail and Trial of a Palestinian Diaspora: Mapping South America in the Arab–Israeli Conflict, 1967–1972

[Cover of

John Tofik Karam, "On the Trail and Trial of a Palestinian Diaspora: Mapping South America in the Arab–Israeli Conflict, 1967–1972." Journal of Latin American Studies 45.5 (November 2013). Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this article? John Tofik Karam (JTK): I didn’t set out to do the kind of research that resulted in this article. I was on leave in 2008-9, during which time I worked in some archives in Asunción, Paraguay for my current book project on Arab diasporic networks at the trinational border where Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay meet. Gathering sources from different archives in Asunción, I began following the chain of events recounted in the ...

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العمل المشترك بين القوى اليسارية والعلمانية والديمقراطية

[لوحة للفنانة الأردنية هيلدا الحياري]

يتم الفصل في المجتمعات الحديثة ما بين الذاكرة وعلم التاريخ، الذي أصبح هو الذي يحدد ويفسر أحداث الماضي. وينتقد الفيلسوف نيتشه، المؤرخين الذين ينتهجون ذاكرة انتقائية في ٳختيارهم، فقط لما يعتبرونه مفيداً للمجتمع وللإنسان. فقد شهد القرن العشرين اهتماماً ملحوظاً بمسألة الذاكرة. فبحسب أبحاث سيجموند فرويد، فإن (الذاكرة الواعية) لا تمثل أبداً ماضي الإنسان، حيث يمكننا الوصول ٳلى الحقائق فقط عن طريق ٳعادة ترتيب بعض التجارب المكبوتة. ومن ناحية أخرى أدت الأحداث العالمية في القرن العشرين وبالتحديد بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية والمحرقة واﻹبادات الجماعية ٳلى اﻹهتمام المتزايد من قبل العلوم الإنسانية والعلوم المقارنة، والمتعددة التخصصات بمسألة الذاكرة الجماعية، وتداعياتها على علم التاريخ ...

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On Protests in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Quickly and Darkly

[A woman protests in front of a police cordon with banner “We want resignations” in the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo on Sunday 9 February 2014. Image by Amel Emric via Associated Press]

Two Vignettes Conversation One was with the waiter in a large Sarajevo hotel, where we were generally a bit sheepish to be attending our conference (the deciding factor was that it was big enough for all of the participants, the down side was its odd business history and the fact that the main conference room was also where Radovan Karadžić liked to hold his soirees with the media). A colleague and I had heard that the employees of the hotel had not been paid for several months, so we asked. It was true, he told us. Most of the employees had remained at the hotel through a series of ownerships and bankruptcies, and had often faced periods of reduced pay, no pay, or ...

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A Bomb, With Ribbon Around It

[Sculptures from Jaishri Abichandani's

South Asian Women’s Creative Collective, A Bomb, With Ribbon Around It. Queens Museum, Queens, New York, 14 December 2013 – 18 January 2014. A Bomb, With a Ribbon Around It, at the Queens Museum through 18 January 2014, is an eclectic collection of contemporary works from the South Asian Women’s Creative Collective, more commonly known as SAWCC. The show is part of SAWCC’s ongoing work—since its inception sixteen years ago as a grassroots, feminist arts collective in New York—to magnify the voices of emerging and established women artists in the South Asian community. To this end SAWCC, tirelessly produces public readings, film shows, art happenings, and a monthly ...

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New Texts Out Now: Ralf Brand and Sara Fregonese, The Radicals’ City: Urban Environment, Polarization, Cohesion

[Cover of Ralf Brand and Sara Fregonese,

Ralf Brand and Sara Fregonese, The Radicals’ City: Urban Environment, Polarization, Cohesion. Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2013. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Sara Fregonese (SF): The book is based on the research project “The Built Environment: Mirror and Mediator of Radicalization?” which ran from 2008 to 2010 at the University of Manchester, UK. It builds strongly on the significant amount of primary research data that the project produced. Our aim was to tell about radicalization and everyday urban conflicts in a way that isn’t limited to local politics, but instead integrates political considerations with concrete locations and, more specifically, built ...

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New Media, New Politics? Theoretical Interventions and International Invocations

As part of the Jadaliyya Roundtable on New Media and New Politics, we offer three audio presentations from the April 2013 Westminster conference that address matters of mediation from theoretical and international perspectives. The topics presented here problematize analyses of the Arab revolutionary action and mediation by looking at these through the prism of "liberation technology," as synerigistic with South American Occupy movements, and as refractions of Marxist theorizations of digital ...

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W Radio (Colombia) Interviews Jadaliyya co-Editor Mouin Rabbani on Gaza

  The W interviews Jadaliyya co-Editor Mouin Rabbani on the Israeli political endgame in its latest Gaza incursion. They also discussed his article "Israel Mows the Lawn."      

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Curbing Violence in Nigeria (II): The Boko Haram Insurgency

[The following report was issued by the International Crisis Group (ICG) on 3 2014.]   Executive Summary Boko Haram’s four-year-old insurgency has pitted neighbour against neighbour, cost more than 4,000 lives, displaced close to half a million, destroyed hundreds of schools and government buildings and devastated an already ravaged economy in the North East, one of Nigeria’s poorest regions. It overstretches federal security services, with no end in sight, spills over to other parts of the north ...

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Quick Thoughts: Vijay Prashad on India’s Parliamentary Elections

  [Between 7 April and 12 May 2014, more than half a billion Indians voted to elect 543 members of the sixteenth Lok Sabha, the lower house of India’s parliament. The result, announced on 16 May, stunned many observers. For the first time since 1984, a single party–the rightist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led by Narendra Modi–achieved an outright majority. Modi’s party garnered 282 seats in the Lok Sabha, while the outgoing Congress Party managed to retain a mere forty-four seats. Jadaliyya asked ...

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Tahrir, Taksim, Tempelhof: Between Political Fields

Sitting in Engels—one among many of Neukölln's cosy, candlelit, hipster-friendly cafés—I read on a sticker the slogan: “Tah[r]ir, Taksim, Tempelhof: Das Feld gehört uns allen!” (Tahrir, Taksim, Tempelhof: The Field belongs to us all!). Tempelhof itself is a former airport located in former West Berlin, famous for its mythological role in the Berlin airlift during the Cold War. The airport was closed in 2008, but its vast runways and grass fields were re-opened to the public in 2010. People have adopted ...

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Press Release: Bahrain Activists Return from Korea Seeking to Ban Tear Gas Exports

[The following press release was issued by Bahrain Watch on 26 March 2014] A Bahrain Watch delegation has returned from a weeklong visit to Seoul, at the invitation of South Korean civil society activists.  The purpose of the trip was to educate the government and public about ongoing human rights violations and misuse of tear gas in Bahrain, in support of a draft legislative amendment to block arms sales to human rights violators.  The amendment, sponsored by MPs Kim Hyun and Jang Hana, would ...

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MEETING POINTS 7: Ten Thousand Wiles and a Hundred Thousand Tricks

MEETING POINTS 7: Ten Thousand Wiles and a Hundred Thousand Tricks February — March 2014 Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo   Meeting Points 7 is a series of exhibitions taking place between September 2013 and June 2014 in Zagreb, Antwerp, Cairo, Hong Kong, Beirut, Vienna, and Moscow. Organized by the Young Arab Theatre Fund, Meeting Points is a biennial program of exhibitions, screenings, and performances held at several international venues over the course of several months. This latest ...

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Ghosts of Yogas Past and Present

My Facebook feed has recently been saturated with posts and articles regarding yoga in the United States. It has been very frustrating to read about how white people teaching and doing yoga is apparently “traumatic” for South Asian Americans. I grew up in a village eight hours away from Mumbai. As someone from a Bahujan (lower-caste) farmer family in rural India, “yoga” was something very distant to me. It lived in the culture of the brahmanic upper middle class of urban India. Only recently, I have seen ...

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تأملات في الجسد

لأجسادنا وجهان/جلدان، وجه/جلد على العالم الخارجي، في الـ"هناك" البعيد القريب، حيث يتماس "الآخر" مع سطحه، فنعرف به ذواتنا وحدوده، ووجه/جلد على ذواتنا يطل في الـ"هنا"، هو الوجه القريب للمسافة البعيدة التي تهجس فيها أرواحنا بما يضج فيها وبها، هي المسافة الرمزية للأنا، فهيها –مثلًا- يرتع "إسمنا" بما يحمل لنا من خارجنا إلى داخلنا والعكس، هناك تتراتب أسئلتنا الوجودية في مقاعدها بوجاهة طفل، وفوهتها إلينا، وإن أخطأت إلى ...

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حوار مع ديبيش شاكرابرتي القانون هو الذي يحمي الأسس الحقيقية للحداثة

ديبيش شاكرابرتي Dipesh Chakrabarty من مفكري الحداثة وهو يدعو إلى فهم جديد لها في سياقاتها المختلفة، ويدعو أيضاً إلى "حداثة بديلة" يتحدث عنها باستفاضة في كتابه ”مواطن الحداثة: مقالات في صحوة دراسات التابع“، الذي صدر حديثاً في ترجمة عربية لمجيب الرحمان وصدر عن ”كلمة“. بالإضافة إلى ذلك، هو مؤرخ متخصّص في تاريخ الأديان، ودرس العنف الطائفي الذي عايشه شخصياً في الهند، كما أنه مفكر يعيد النظر في المقولات السائدة ويفكك التمركز الأوربي فاتحاً الحداثة على إعادة التشكل الكوني خارج المركزية الأوربية. ...

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A Portrait of Kuwaiti Artist Monira Al Qadiri

 A Portrait of Kuwaiti Artist Monira Al Qadiri Monira Al Qadiri's diverse background and personal history are reflected in much of her work, yet in the most unexpected ways. Her parents--an ex-diplomat and a visual artist--had lived in Russia before she was born in Senegal. Al Qadiri grew up in Kuwait, and at the age of sixteen set off to Japan to study animation. She now lives in Beirut, Lebanon. Al Qadiri has spent years studying the aesthetics of sadness in Eastern cultures. Her work in ...

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India's Iran Policy: Between US Primacy and Regionalism

Abstract Standing at a press conference with Turkmenistan’s Deputy Prime Minister Rashid Meredov on January 22, 2013, India’s President Pranab Mukherjee committed India once more to a natural gas pipeline to run from Central Asia to South Asia. “India is deficient in energy resources,” said the President, “whereas Turkmenistan is rich in hydrocarbons.” The economic complementari­ties are obvious, but not so clear are the political ramifications. The President said that the pipeline is “important for ...

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