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The United States should withdraw the Combined Joint forces Command from the
Greater Horn of Africa.

US military strategy in Africa entrenches governmentality though maintaining
local resilience and external stability
Bachmann, School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, 14
(Jan, Policing Africa: The US military and visions of crafting good order, Security Dialogue April 2014
vol. 45 no. 2 119-136)
The US militarys doctrine of stability operations
When zooming in on the US militarys rationalization of stability operations, we encounter key
dimensions of policing: first, a concern for the welfare of the local population, which requires a deeper
engagement in issues of governance; and second, an emphasis on preventative activities, to which,
however, the use of reasonable force remains central.
Yet the US militarys emphasis on stabilization activities needs to be seen in the context of the
asymmetric challenges encountered in Iraq and Afghanistan and the US militarys response of
counterinsurgency. The military concept of stability operations both builds upon and develops ideas of
counterinsurgency, particularly the emphasis on the concerns of the local population, the importance of
reconstruction and the minimum use of force (Galula, 2006; Kilcullen, 2010; Smith, 2005; US Department
of the Army, 2007a). David Galulas (2006: 63) argument that counterinsurgency is 80% political and 20%
military has been well rehearsed within the military debate. Generating knowledge through intelligence,
social network analysis and expert knowledge of sociocultural norms and habits are preconditions for
organizing the instruments necessary for protecting and winning the support of civilians (US Department
of the Army, 2007a: 82113).
Even though the field manual on counterinsurgency states that excessive violence against the civilian
population can have detrimental effects (US Department of the Army, 2007a: paras 1-1501-153),
defeating the insurgent remains without doubt the principal goal of counterinsurgency warfare. The novelty of the
concept of stability operations is that it outlines military responsibilities not just for post-conflict situations, but also and more importantly, for the argument made in this article
for peacetime situations. In 2005, the US Department of Defenses (2005) Directive 3000.05 put stability operations on a par with combat operations, a step that for Jennifer Taw
(2012: 2) constitutes the [US] armed forces most significant adjustment since the establishment of the Department of Defense in 1947. In a clear resemblance of policing, the
directive defines stability operations as military and civilian activities conducted across the spectrum from peace to conflict to establish or maintain order in states or regions.
The directive makes clear that, even though most stability tasks will be provided by indigenous or other civilian agencies, U.S. military forces shall be prepared to perform all
tasks necessary to establish or maintain order when civilians cannot do so. This encompassing definition of military tasks provides for the possibility of a US military government
under conditions of state failure.
The official doctrine of stability operations (US Department of the Army, 2008) offers a similarly broad view on the militarys role in reconstruction, development and statebuilding. However, in contrast to the field manual on counterinsurgency, this document has so far gone almost unnoticed in critical security studies.5 This is surprising, as this
document outlines a framework for future engagement of the US military in situations from stable peace to general war (US Department of the Army, 2008: para. 1-11). The few
studies that exist point to the ambitious agenda and potentially far-reaching implications of the stability operations that the doctrine introduces (Gordon, 2010). Collinson et al.
(2010: 276) argue, for example, that the integration of military and civilian tasks and the engineering of sustainable statecivil society relations in distant spaces provide
stabilization with a broader transformative, geographical and historical scope. Jennifer Taw argues that stability operations have become the US militarys new raison dtre, as
they extend the duties of the US armed forces to include the establishment and maintenance of order both in war situations and in peacetime (Taw, 2012: 3, 1).

The US Army defines stability operations as encompassing military missions that, in coordination with
other instruments of national power [to] maintain or re-establish a safe and secure environment, provide
essential governmental services, emergency infrastructure reconstruction and humanitarian relief (US
Department of the Army, 2008: vi). Even though the US Army does not engage in a debate on statebuilding, the stability operations doctrine includes the end-state vision of the rule of law, social well-being,
stable governance, a sustainable economy (US Department of the Army, 2008: para. 1-79). The doctrine
provides a number of detailed tasks for military actors on each of these visions. Short-term tasks aimed at
restoring essential services are complemented by long-term activities of supporting local governance and
economic development through building local governance structures, preparing elections and shaping
perceptions of the local population through information engagement (US Department of the Army, 2008:
paras 3-473-74).
To judge from the expansive list of activities for the military within stability operations, the doctrine
exposes commonalities with a previous understanding of policing as the good administration of public life
and the promotion of welfare for the communities (Neocleous, 2000b: 721722). The implications are
twofold. First, the extensive involvement of external military units in governance issues of another state
potentially displaces domestic ownership over these issues. Second, such an engagement in
governance issues is not limited to an immediate post-conflict reconstruction phase but will be applied
in peacetime contexts with the objective of sustaining the long-term viability of host nations and

provid[ing] the foundation for multinational cooperation that helps to maintain the global balance of power
(US Department of the Army, 2008: vii). It means, in effect, that a regular and preventative regulatory
engagement of the military in fragile contexts a policing function is a precondition for maintaining
the global balance of power. The words of former US defense secretary Robert Gates are
paradigmatic in the context of prevention: what is likely though, even a certainty, is the need to work with
and through local governments to avoid the next insurgency, to rescue the next failing state, or to head off
the next humanitarian disaster (US Department of the Army, 2008: para. 2-1). The extension of military
activities in the absence of violent conflict is called peacetime military engagement or phase zero.6
Peacetime engagement mainly involves training of partner capacity through joint exercises or security
sector reform programmes (US Department of the Army, 2008: paras 6-16-31), but also includes the
development projects of US civil affairs teams that are carried out in problematized but non-war spaces,
which will be studied in the next section. Retired General Charles Wald argued that phase zero is
essentially a conflict prevention strategy (quoted in Taw, 2012: 142).
The use of coercion to end hostilities remains a central part of the stability operations doctrine,
however. It is at the intersection of neutralizing hostile groups, protecting populations, supporting better
governance and economic development, where ideas on counterinsurgency and stabilization
overlap. Here, at this entanglement, the value of analysing the US militarys take on stability through
the concept of policing comes to the fore, as the use of force, good administration and persistent
preventative engagement seem to be equally pertinent.
The remainder of the article will show how the US military becomes engrained in the fabric of fragile
contexts in Africa through policing practices. The African continent, problematized in Western security and
development policies as abundant with multiple challenges said to be emerging from ungoverned
spaces, has for the US military become a laboratory where ideas on the militarys preventative and
horizontal engagement are tested under the umbrella of stability. As I will show, AFRICOMs expanding
engagement in health and development issues, on the one hand, and surveillance, counter-terrorism and
military training, on the other, merit an exploration through the concept of policing.

The US focus on indirect humanitarian policing and resilience in East Africa

militarizes civilian life and naturalizes crises
Bachmann, School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, 14
(Jan, Policing Africa: The US military and visions of crafting good order, Security Dialogue April 2014
vol. 45 no. 2 119-136)
One visible shift in US military engagement in Africa has been the move to an indirect approach in
efforts to counter terrorism. The Pentagons Quadrennial Defence Review defines an indirect approach as
the ability to work through and with partners and to sustain a persistent and low visibility presence (US
Department of Defense, 2006: 11). Preventing future conflict is one of four cornerstones of
AFRICOMs stated mission objectives (US Africa Command, 2013a), and it is CJTFHoAs shift of
emphasis from hunting terrorists towards preventing radicalization through welfare projects that is
considered crucial for the missions success: "Operating across large areas but using only small
detachments, CJTFHOA is a prime example of distributed operations and economy of force. Military,
civilian, and allied personnel work together to provide security training and to perform public works and
medical assistance projects, demonstrating the benefits of unity of effort. (US Department of Defense,
2006: 11)"
CJTFHoAs civil affairs teams, coordinated from the headquarters in Djibouti, have been implementing
medical, veterinary, and small-scale humanitarian and infrastructure projects across Eastern Africa for
almost a decade.11 Most of the projects are carried out in areas that US security strategists conceptualize
as being under-governed and as exploitable by terrorists.12 CJTFHoA civil affairs teams have
implemented hundreds of projects across Eastern Africa, with a focus on Djibouti and the northern and
coastal parts of Kenya. The activities include school and health centre renovations, drilling of wells,
training of militaries, training of civilian staff in health and public safety, veterinary programmes,
community outreach and humanitarian practices.13 Two things are striking with regard to the activities of
the civil affairs teams in this region. First, there is an increasing engagement in humanitarian, health and
infrastructure projects in which the link to matters of counter-radicalization or stability is hardly palpable.
Second, the persistence of the activities of US civil affairs teams in certain regions not only leads to the

perception of the US military as the primary source of external funding by potential beneficiaries, but also
contributes to the subtle normalization of the US militarys role in local welfare issues.14 One can,
however, make sense of these inconsistencies when we read the US militarys expanding investment in
social ordering as a function of policing.
One of the most advertised current US programmes in Uganda is the One Health Initiative, which aims at
improving veterinary and public health services and at preventing the spread of contagious diseases. The
initiative includes classroom sessions on basic disease surveillance, recognition, epidemiology, water
sanitation, hygiene, nutrition, family planning, as well as maternal and child health and highlights the
importance of the welfare of the local communities (US Embassy, 2013). The initiative is promoted as a
holistic whole-of-government programme, involving the US Agency for International Development
(USAID), Ugandan civilian authorities, the Ugandan armed forces and CJTFHoA civil affairs teams. Even
though the security aspect of these activities is not discernible, CJTFHoA officials try to frame the health
programme ineptly in terms of protecting US interests: we are helping protect the [US] economy, the
market, the farmers, and animals by keeping these devastating diseases out of our country (US Africa
Command, 2013b). Through a widely advertised programme such as the One Health Initiative, the US
military becomes intertwined with local governance issues in a peacetime context.
Even though the achievements of the US militarys civil affairs teams in Lamu County in the northern
coastal region of Kenya are not as widely advertised, the normalization of US military teams as aid
donors occurs through the persistence of their projects. CJTFHoAs Maritime Civil Affairs Teams
have been active in the Lamu region for nearly a decade. They have implemented around 200 projects in
Lamu County, most of which are school renovations and water catchment projects.15 The interviews
show that in a region where the presence of international aid organizations is comparatively low, for
many beneficiaries the civil affairs teams become the first addressees when it comes to raising needs to
potential external funders.16
This perception of military teams becoming development implementers is shared by some of the team
members themselves: "The grand force-to-force wars are over. What you need is a preventative
engagement, stability missions. Civil affairs have to come up with sustainable solutions that include a
focus on educating the people. Sure, this [i.e. what the teams do] is development, but for me poverty
reduction and stability go hand in hand. The objectives of civil affairs and development are the same.
Whoever is best at doing the job should do it. The civil affairs teams are force multipliers for the
NGOs.17 "
The practice of military units engaging in welfare issues is, however, contested. While these small-scale
development projects face many of the same dilemmas as traditional aid operations particularly in
relation to ownership, sustainability and donor dependency such problems are magnified by the fact that
the projects intensify the US military involvement in reordering African societies through an increased
regulatory engagement in local governance processes.
While this already reflects the concern with ordering inherent in policing, arguably, the fact that AFRICOM
engages in development projects in itself does not amount to policing. Yet, in contrast to the situation for
regular aid donors, of course, the use of (reasonable) force constitutive for police power remains
part of the repertoire of AFRICOMs order-making practices. Hence, the preventative welfare projects
need to be studied in the context of the general problematization of ungoverned spaces and the
assertion that those spaces provide fertile grounds for radicalization and violent conflict. The killing of
terrorist suspects and the deployment of special operations forces to capture rebel leaders, such as the
Lords Resistance Armys (LRA) Joseph Kony, constitute the other side of the US militarys stability
engagement. Leaving aside AFRICOMs operation Odyssey Dawn 2011 in Libya, two kinds of operations
stand out in this regard: AFRICOMs role in the war against the LRA in Uganda and the increasing
number of covert operations, surveillance actions and drone attacks against suspected terrorists.
With the aim of supporting the Ugandan government in its fight against the rebels of the LRA, US
President Barack Obama, in October 2011, sent 100 so-called military advisors to Eastern and Central
Africa (Obama, 2011). These units are dispersed on bases in the Democratic Republic of the Congo,
South Sudan, Ethiopia, the Central African Republic and Uganda (Whitlock, 2012a). The active support of
the US military in capturing the LRAs leader, Joseph Kony, adds a moral justification for AFRICOMs very
operations and additionally legitimizes any actions of the Ugandan military in this region. Rights activists
in northern Uganda raise concern that, with the arrival of combat-equipped special forces in the conflict, a
military solution to a conflict that has been going on since the late 1980s has once more become
the only legitimate one.18 Critical voices are then considered as criminal or immoral and presented as

further proof of the necessity of a military intervention itself, as Branch (2011) has vividly demonstrated in
his study on the conflict in northern Uganda. Thus, the US special forces in this conflict do not engage in
combat. However, this does not necessarily imply an absence of force. As the coercive power of the
police is latent in its presence, so does AFRICOMs engagement on the continent carry the possibility of
violence. As Ryan (2013: 442) has argued, violence begins with the arrival of an individual within
whom the capacity to inflict death resides.
The second example is the use of covert action against terrorist suspects as a standard tool of operation.
Special operations forces and private contractors scan large parts of Central Africa for Al-Qaeda affiliates.
Furthermore, the Horn of Africa particularly Somalia is mapped by drones that start from airfields on
the Seychelles and in Ethiopia (Turse, 2012, 2013; Whitlock, 2012b). The UN Monitoring Group on
Somalia and Eritrea reported that unidentified unmanned aerial vehicles routinely operate in Somali
airspace, and it considers their use owing to its military character a potential violation of the arms
embargo (UN Monitoring Group on Somalia, 2012: 224, 231). Some of these flights have been used for
targeted assassinations of suspected Al-Shabaab fighters. Since 2007, up to 150 suspected militants and
civilians have been killed by US drone strikes and covert operations in Somalia (Bureau of Investigative
Journalism, 2013). Targeted operations are executed not only in the war zones in Afghanistan, but also on
the African continent. One of the most recent ones was a raid by special operations forces on a house in
the Somali town of Barawe only days after the hostage drama in Nairobis Westgate Shopping Centre in
September 2013. The US forces were looking for a senior Al-Shabaab figure. The operation failed and
two al-Shabaab fighters were killed (Bureau of Investigative Journalism, 2013; Guardian, 2013). Force is
used selectively reasonably in policing terms to remove individual spoilers from spaces that
are perceived to be on the brink of sliding into disorder.
Welfare and the management of order/disorder are the two primary concerns of police science on
the domestic level. In the context of ordering fragile states, as the case of US AFRICOM has
demonstrated, we see that external military institutions are increasingly occupied with exactly these
issues: prevention, governance, social ordering. As we have seen, the means the US military uses in
fostering stability are manifold. Despite AFRICOMs appearance as a governance partner, such an
appearance can always be backed up by the use of coercion if this is deemed necessary for
maintaining a particular notion of order.
The aim of this article has been to conceptually understand the current reconfiguration of US military
doctrine and practice that is currently taking place under the label of stability. Through a discussion of the
US militarys stability operations field manual and the practices of US Africa Command, I have suggested
that the spectrum of activities can be understood most comprehensively through an analytical perspective
of policing, in which the aim of establishing good order through an expansive regulatory engagement in
issues of welfare is applied to contexts of fragile statehood and ungoverned spaces.
As discussed in the article, the problematization of spaces as ungoverned is a call for action and
has produced new forms of governance interventions. Those spaces, assumed by security strategists
to be between war and peace, are subjected to myriad forms of external engagements. Fighting terrorists,
preventing insurgencies, managing disasters, rebuilding societies, and building democracies and market
economies are all assembled under the heading of stabilization. Mitchell (2010) calls this framing of
ungoverned spaces the geopolitics of broken windows, as it draws on the link made earlier in
Western urban contexts between neglect and social disorder. While the response to the broken windows
theory was the policy of zero tolerance, the new interventionism in ungoverned spaces in the global South
is a mix of preventative welfare issues and reasonable force aimed at establishing todays version of
good order, called stability.
Does an emphasis on the well-being of populations, reconstruction, governance and development in the
recent discourses and practices of stability operations undermine or redraw the line between civilian and
military tasks, as feared by a number of civilian agencies during the close civilmilitary collaboration in
Afghanistan? I have argued that the focus on the line between civilian and military responsibilities is
limited in its capacity to account for the current spectrum of the US militarys activities in its operations
other than war in sub-Saharan Africa. As police power operates on both sides of the thin blue line
that separates order from disorder (Ryan, 2013: 443), the exact position of the boundaries between
what are seen as ungoverned, fragile and vulnerable spaces is not recognizable. These spaces are, to
different extents, in need of ordering interventions. The article has argued that we can use policing as a
way of inquiring about the very simultaneousness of coercive and more benign engagements of

militaries in fragile settings under the umbrella of stabilization. Killing terrorists and the
refurbishment of schools are not in disagreement, but serve in their synthesis of welfare and coercion
the same objective of social ordering through the concept of stabilization. When following this
analytical lens, future research could be more attentive to the (potentially) violent practices of managing
disorder, or the entanglements of police and war (Bachmann et al., 2014; Neocleous, 2014), rather than
to the question of the right division of labour between civilian and military actors. Taking into account the
views of the communities targeted by stabilization activities, further research additionally needs to study
dissenting voices to stabilization practices, and to inquire into the consequences of such a strategization
of peacetime environments by external militaries for wider NorthSouth relations.

The securitization of aid corrupts humanitarian intervention its driven by

military objectives instead of need
Bachmann, School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, 10
(Jan, Kick Down the Door, Clean up the Mess, and Rebuild the House The Africa Command and
Transformation of the US Military, Geopolitics, 15:564585, 2010)
The AFRICOM website as one platform of transparency and participation has incorporated interactive
features of the web 2.0 generation and not only includes multimedia applications but also allows the
public to post comments which if they are critical of the command are likely to be answered promptly
by a member of staff. The website also includes the AFRICOM dialogue where officials explain their
work using an empowering rhetoric standard to any Western development agency website: AFRICOM will
add value, it will make a positive difference and will do no harm.49 AFRICOMs missions benefitting
the local population are prominently featured through pictures and video. The commands traditional
counterterrorism unit, CJTF-HoA, emphasises its infrastructure development and cultural activities
including drilling wells, repairing a school or playing with the local kids in a soccer game. Out of ninety
news releases on the CJTF-HoA website between January 2008 and June 2009, every second one is
related to development and humanitarian assistance projects. An additional ten are related to events of
cultural exchange. In contrast, only fifteen touch upon military-to-military training which is at the core of
CJTFs mission.50 Civilian projects are also force multipliers as, first, they build CJTF-HoAs capacity
by providing access to high risk areas,51 and second, do good actions enhance the morale of the
teams involved.52 The common plot of these stories centres on the transformation of one service
member of the US military from an ordinary guy, doing an ordinary job in the US, knowing nothing about
Africa, to a culturally aware quasi-development worker. Marine Sergeant Matt OBrian, for instance, volunteered to become team leader in a
civilian programme in the village of Chebellier in Djibouti: I was itching to start my work in the village because I like doing community service. . .. I felt like it was a part of my duty
to go out there and do what I could to help those people out; but I dont do it out of pity, although these people are in need. I figured that if we have the money, the means and
the manpower, then why not? One of my main goals for the village has always been self-reliance. . . . My best memory of Chebellier will be knowing that we did a good job and
made a difference. We didnt sit on our butts for six months and we went out there because we wanted to, not because we had to.53
Through its discourse of partnership, of inviting a broad discussion about its role, through the linking up with the civil counterparts within the US administration, and through the
highlighting of civil outreach programmes to the local communities, the military has been creating a social reality in which it appears as a non-hierarchic, and participatory
These signifying practices are part of a hegemonic project in a Gramscian sense, that is, an effort for the organisation of acceptance.54 The public affairs section of the US
military provides carefully selected knowledge about itself (priority of civilian missions, capability and willingness to listen and learn), the target area (undergoverned but full of
opportunities) and the reasons for engagement (a possible threat if left un-engaged, strategic interests, preventing human tragedy, facilitating the fulfilment of these
opportunities), making them more intelligible for a general audience. The strategy both totalises the social and organises it into categories and hierarchies, defining the situations

, the expansion of the military into these

new population-centred terrains is not an isolated development but is embedded in the history of the
convergence of security and development and the transformation of the US military and the US foreign
assistance system.
In its effort to highlight its non-traditional character, AFRICOM has successfully appropriated the
discussion about the inextricability of development and security that has become a strategic
discursive formation for Western policy makers across the departments since the 1990s.57 It is
uncontested that there have been historical ties between the idea of welfare interventions and the idea of
international stability, be it during late colonialism or during the Cold War.58 However, it was not before
the end of the Cold War, when the signifier security was untied from the signified state security,
culminating in the concept of human security. Conflicts in the South were perceived as dysfunctional to
development and as constituting a social regression with negative effects not only for the particular
regions but for the international realm. Since then, security and conflict have been at the centre of
engagement for development practitioners.59 Donor agencies, policy makers and NGOs found new
where interventionary measures (both enabling and coercive) simply become no longer questionable.55 Thus

programmes and departments with different methodological approaches to measure conflicts and to
develop best practices in order to prevent crises. The subsequent responsibility to protect
reaffirms the necessity of humanitarian interventions in states which fail to protect their
After the attacks on 11 September 2001 deficient states (as compared
to the ideal type of the rational Western state) not only became the greatest
challenge for Western development agencies but were also constructed as a threat to global security. The
official problematisation of weak states by the 2002 US National Security Strategy has established a
discursive urgency to counter this threat. Not to engage with these spaces was no longer an
option.61 Several Western development agencies recognised the necessity to incorporate anti-terrorism
in their agendas.62 The counterterrorism and reconstruction interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq have
challenged humanitarian and development agencies in conflict situations and have led to an increased
cooperation between civilian agencies and the military.63
The proposition that there can be no security without development and vice versa has become
conventional wisdom in foreign policy and development circles. This rationality has led to the
establishment of wholeofgovernment, 3D (diplomacy, defence, development) and interagency
approaches of Western governments which entailed an increasing role for the military in foreign
assistance and a reshuffling of duties between the military and civilian agencies. Given the Pentagons
expansion into traditional terrains of civilian foreign assistance as well as the staggering imbalance in
(human and capital) resources between the Pentagon and the civilian agencies, the harmonisation of
government departments has led to a fundamental debate about the future of US foreign assistance.
Acting When Others Cannot The Militarys Expanding Role in US Foreign Assistance
Americas development assistance and its strategic interest have been in close relationship since the
Truman doctrine in 1947. USAIDs cooperation with the US military and the CIA within the pacification
programme Civil Operations and Revolutionary Development Support Programme (CORDS) in Vietnam
as well as its engagement in police trainings in Latin America (and Ethiopia) through its Office of Public
Safety are well documented.64 In fact it was exactly these activities that led to the formulation of section
660 of the US Foreign Assistance Act which prohibits police assistance by USAID.65 However, the
portfolio of USAID has been downsized in the last decades. USAID lost almost half of its staff between
1980 and 1998; the Agencys presence in the field has been reduced. Budgetary responsibility was
transferred to the State Department. USAID has also lost much of its technical expertise and has become
a mere contracting and grant-making agency.66 While the Bush administration has significantly
increased its official development assistance (ODA), an increasing part is in fact security assistance and
allocated by the Pentagon. By 2005, the Pentagon controlled more than 20% of US ODA (compared to
3.5% in 1998) while USAIDs share shrunk from 65% to 40%.67 A former USAID deputy administrator
argues that reporting projects such as the Commanders Emergency Response Programme, various antidrug projects as well as military-to-military HIV-programmes as ODA is misleading:
If you examine those programmes, there are clearly military spending on the civil-military, civic action or
pacification programmes that are an integral part of a military strategy for winning those wars. ... They are
not about development. If they help bring an end to these wars, they are successful. If they do not,
they are failures.68

That attempt to secure space replicates broken windows policing on a regional

level interrogating political choices is key to examine the nexus of policing and
Mitchell, PhD, Professor of Geography at the University of Washington, 10
(Katharyne, Ungoverned space: Global security and the geopolitics of broken windows, Political
Geography Vol. 29, No. 5)
In the contemporary era perceived threats to the security of the U.S. encompass not just military build-up
and territorial aggression, but also concerns about the effective administration of civil societythe
supervision of everyday order and the welfare of populations (Larner and Walters, 2004; Dillon, 2004;
Duffield, 2007). As a result, recent changes in global security practices include far greater attention
towards the seemingly mundane: the securitization of streets, the management of institutions, and
the organization of systems of law and order. In this growing emphasis on the global administration of

people and space, concepts about what constitutes risk and threat are increasingly borrowed from the
domestic arena, especially the shared ideas about criminality and systems of effective social and spatial
control (Andreas and Price, 2001; Berdal and Serrano, 2002; Andreas and Nadelmann, 2006).
Recent work on this theme by Didier Bigo (2001, 2005) explores questions of global governance and the
blurring of assumed binaries such as external/internal and military/policing. Drawing on Foucault and
Bourdieu, especially the notion of governing through systems of security, Bigo examines the security
mechanisms and technical practices through which liberal systems rule (see also Johnston & Shearing,
2003; Valverde, 2001; Valverde & Mopas, 2006). For critical geopolitical scholars working with these
ideas, the territorial imperative, or imaginative scripting of geographical space and its relationship to U.S.
security is now often seen to employ a different language, logic and set of practices than in prior
eras (Campbell, 2005; Elden, 2009; Elden & Williams, 2009). The imaginative geopolitical scripting of the
neoliberal era, for example, has moved from a Cold War conceptualization of security attained through
effective spatial containment, to an idea of security won through effective spatial administration. Within
this broad body of work, policing has featured as an increasingly important aspect of global security
governance (see also Bayley & Shearing, 2001; Kraska, 2001). In this transformative moment, the
theory of broken windows plays an important and interesting role. Broken windows policing is
based on the idea that an unwillingness or inability of authorities to deal with disorder and petty crime in
the landscape (such as vandalism) transmits a signal of weakness or indifference to nearby criminals
which encourages them to intensify their illegal activities (Harcourt, 2001; Herbert, 2001; Kelling & Coles,
1996; Skogan, 1990; Wilson & Kelling, 1982). To counteract this perception of spatial non-governance
and keep criminal behavior from escalating, proponents of the theory counsel greater attention by the
authorities to minor forms of disorder, more effective policing, and sharper overall surveillance. In a
notable conflation of scales, this influential idea is now often used analogously with respect to
current geopolitical concerns about weak states and ungoverned national territories (Pineu, 2007).
The use of geopolitical language such as broken windows serves to legitimate state practices, but is also
effective as a shaping force for newly articulated positions and subjects. As Sharp (2000) and many
others have shown, it is identities, and not just policies, that are constructed in the discourses of
geopolitics. Dalby (2010), for example, notes the importance of: address(ing) the key that links
violence, wars, strategy and identity in the discussions of security. He further discusses the importance of
specific technologies in shaping contemporary subjectivities vis--vis the language of danger and
insecurity: We must point[] out the political choices implicit in how danger is articulated to
various identities, and how specific institutions are in part shaped by the technical practices
deemed appropriate responses to these specifications of danger (Dalby, 2010).
The rhetorical deployment of broken windows policing at both urban and regional scales operates as a
cipher for dangerous ungoverned spaces necessitating externally imposed state systems of
governance. In addition, the early association of broken windows policing with Rudy Giuliani, former
mayor of New York City, has meant that the phrase is frequently linked with both the rhetoric and
practices of zero tolerance, which has come to signify a highly punitive state reaction to misbehavior of
any kind, especially disorder in the streets. The idea of zero tolerance for minor social infractions was not
initially part of the broken windows theory, but became linked with it owing to Mayor Giulianis emphasis
on law and order, combined with his strongly authoritarian approach to governing.
In this paper, I look at the broken windows/zero tolerance (hereafter BW/ZT) language of danger and
security vis--vis the spatial administration of populations, and also some of the specific technical
practices through which danger becomes spatially comprehended and articulated to certain subject
positions. I argue that broken windows policing, as an imaginative geopolitical scripting of the perils of
chaotic and ungoverned space, helps to produce new forms of governance through security. This
disciplining process also facilitates the formation and entrenchment of neoliberal practices and
subjectivities by rendering spaces and populations insecure and in need of repositioning, and hence
opening them up to market forces and technologies of the self such as privatization, commodification, and
individual responsibilization (Lemke, 2001: 201). By tracing the path of broken windows discourse and
technical practices across space, I document some of the specific technologies and players through
which ideas such as these can travel and become institutionalized globally. And finally, by examining the
material repercussions of these institutional shifts, I emphasize the critical importance of economic factors
in affecting the ways in which geopolitical imaginations of security unfold.
Interrogating the conceptual deployment of broken windows policing and zero tolerance practices in New
York City and then in Iraq can help us to understand how imaginative scriptings of weak governance and

ungoverned space can travel and be mobilized at different scales to justify new hybrid forms of
social control and spatial administration, and also how these may be linked with economic
dispossession and the extension of neoliberalism more generally. Further, reflecting on the conflation of
BW/ZT usage across scales, and some of the repercussions of its deployment in two specific sites, can
help us to interrogate the merging of war and policing with more empirical precision. While many scholars
have analyzed this fusing as a particularly violent and intrusive mode of security in the contemporary era
(e.g. Bigo, 2005), few have looked at the specific practices and institutions through which this fusing has
taken place (but see Amoore, 2009; Graham, 2010).

AFRICOM resiliency operations in the horn are catastrophic tons of civilian

deaths, war crimes, and sexual assault second order effects entrench poverty
and stifle any attempts at reform
Branch, Lecturer in African Politics, Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of
Cambridge as University, 11
(Adam, Displacing Human Rights: War and Intervention in Northern Uganda, Oxford University Press, Jul
25, 2011, pg. 226-233)
AFRICOM's objective of building state security capacitywhether in the name of helping states to control
"ungoverned spaces," secure natural resources, fight terrorism, establish human security, or even
capture war criminalscan be carried out under a wide range of different bilateral and regional military
assistance and training programs and exercises. Some, like the East Africa Counter-Terrorism Initiative
(EACT1), the Trans-Sahara Counter-Terrorism partnership, or the Operations Flintlock, arc focused
around lighting terrorism; some, like the Africa Contingency Operations Training and Assistance Program
(ACOTA), are focused around training for defensive and offensive military operations for peacekeeping;
others, such as Operation National Fire 10 in Kitgum, are focused on humanitarian and natural disasters;
and still others, such as the presence operations along the African coast, are focused on maritime
security.66 African states can also receive direct military aid, equipment, and training through a wide
variety of programs implemented by AFRICOM.67
Critics have rightly noted that this form of aid can end up propping up dictatorships and undermining
democracy.*8 Michael Klare and Daniel Volman point out that the types of multilateral and regional
security training and capacity-building initiatives being carried out by the United States"small unit
manoeuvers, counter insurgency, light infantry operations"are perfectly suited for suppressing threats
to oil installations and flow or in pacifying armed resistance to oil exploitation.*9 This militarized statebuilding, It Is argued, also allows African states and militaries to easily instrumentalize U.S.
assistance to their own interests.70
Uganda's relation to AFRICOM demonstrates the negative consequences that can stem from the
various forms this militarized state-building program can take. Uganda has been the recipient of
significant U.S. military assistance, which has waxed and waned but stands to increase further at present
through three routes: first, U.S. funding for African-staffed peacekeeping operations, such as the mostly
Ugandan AU deployment in Somalia; second, military support for African stales to directly, without the
mantle of the AU, pursue certain military objectives, such as the funding provided to Uganda to expand its
presence throughout central Africa in pursuit of the LRA; and third, funding for humanitarian and disaster
response operations, such as Uganda's Natural Fire 10.
First, US. assistance to African peacekeeping operations has often been framed as the most potentially
beneficial dimension of AFRICOM, welcomed even by some commentators who are intensely critical of
AFRICOM's other activities. The case of Somalia, however, reveals the problems with this form of U.S.
support. It was an American-assisted Ethiopian invasion and occupation of Somalia in 2006 that drove out
the Union of Islamic Courts, destroyed the modicum of stability they had established, and installed
the extremely weak Somali Transitional Federal Government (TFG) In Mogadishu. As Ethiopia made
clear its Intention to depart, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) gradually took over the duty
of supporting the TFG, and since mid-2007, Ugandan troops have been upholding what little control Is left
to the TFG in the face of advances by al-Shabaab. In doing so, however, like the Ethiopian invasion
before them, they have inflicted devastation on Somali civilians, provoking considerable
resentment against their presence, the Obama administration has used AMISOM, and Uganda forces in

particular, to funnel arms to the TFG in contravention of the AU mandate and despite vociferous
opposition from the Ugandan media and parliament.71 The bombings in Kampala during the World
Cup of 2010-apparently ordered by al-Shabaab-provided an opportunity for the Ugandan government to
justify an expanded offensive military role in Somalia, and it was soon requesting U.S. support for 10,000
more Ugandan troops to be sent to Somalia as part of the erstwhile peacekeeping mission. Under the
cover of supporting peacekeeping operations, the United States provides arms to the TFG, escalates the
conflict, and pushes the U.S. military agenda, while the Ugandan government secures more U.S. military
support and a firm justification for its own militarization. As usual, the price is paid by Ugandan and,
especially, Somali civilians, and possible war crimes committed by Ugandan and Ethiopian troops
with U.S. support are ignored or dismissed in the name of counterterrorism and peace. The United
States promotes a cycle of militarization, radicalizing both its U.S. proxies and its enemies. The
AU, meanwhile, sees its legitimacy diminished.
Second, the United States provides support to Uganda as part of the military effort against the LRA
whether in Southern Sudan, PRC, or CAR. This military funding is justified through a number of different
claims, some moral and some political, including arresting Kony for the ICC, eliminating the LRA, rescuing
abducted civilians, bringing Kony back to peace talks, and promoting regional stability and human
security.73 Some critics have identified hard U.S. interests behind this approach, namely, building
Uganda's military in preparation for I possible return to war in Southern Sudan and securing access to
DRC's natural resources. The most visible aspect of this support has been AFRICOM's involvement in
Operation Lightning Thunder (OLT)the December 2008 military operation carried out by the UPDF with
U.S. assistance against LRA bases In DRC.7*
The consequences of this form of militarized state-building can be devastating. African states can take
advantage of the provision of external military support and step up violence against their own
enemies. African militaries, with US. support, gain the incentive to polarize situations and provoke
counterviolence so as to legitimate expanded militarization, while they lose the incentive to engage
in negotiated solutions. AFRICOM also allows African states to moralize the violence they use under
the cover of counterterrorism, peace, or even justice, releasing that violence from limitation. In the
case of OLT, after the LRA escaped evidently having been tipped off to the operationit reacted by
carrying out a series of brutal attacks on Congolese villages, killing hundreds of civilians and
displacing tens of thousands. OLT led to further insecurity and instability In eastern DRC and South
Sudan and to the militarization of communities in those areas, which, according to some commentators,
made the LRA even stronger However, because of the moralization of the use of force against Kony,
these negative consequences are dismissed and neither the UPDF nor the US. government is held
AFRICOM can further avoid accountability by blaming its failures on its African partners, as it did in the
wake of OLT. As significantly, AFRICOMs proponents take its failures as signaling the need for its
expansion: instead of provoking a rethinking of militarization itself, the hundreds of dead Congolese,
apparently representing the acceptable "collateral damage" of deepening U.S. military involvement, have
been used to justify a call for a redoubled military effort to wipe out the LRA.74 This was precisely the
misguided lesson taken from OLT's failure by U.S. Senators Russ Feingold and Sam Brownback. egged
on by American lobby groups such as Invisible Children, Resolve Uganda, and the ENOUGH Project,
which will be discussed later.
The third mode through which AFRICOM provides military assistance to African states is joint
humanitarian and disaster relief training exercises, such as Operation Natural Fire 10 hosted by the
Ugandan government in Kitgum in October 2009. That operation included, according to an East African
Community representative, training in humanitarian assistance, disaster-relief management, peacesupport operations, counterterrorism operations, and crisis response, part of developing regional
responses to "real and potential complex emergencies."75 The US. Army web site was, as usual, even
more vague about the purposes of the operation: "by building capacity within partner nations and
increasing our ability to work together, US Army Africa will be better prepared for future engagements."76
Although the U.S. government denied that Natural Fire was in preparation for possible operations against
the LRA, critics and proponents alike presented that as Natural Fire's true motivation, pointing to the fact
that the operation included live-fire training, crowd control, convoy security, and vehicle checkpoints.77
Again, US. policy tends toward militarization at the international, national, and local levels,
justified by multiple and ambiguous moral and political claims.

The humanitarian and development aspect of AFRICOM has taken center stage in Its self-promotion, but
thus far remains a limited part of its operations.78 CTF-HoA. for example, between 2003 and 2009 spent
only $6.9 million on a total of 151 projects.19 Nevertheless, the prominence of humanitarian and
development activities and their potential to expand further, especially through crisis response training
exercises, justify attention.
The importance of the humanitarian and development dimension of AFRICOM follows on wider trends
within American military strategy. The Defense Department's 200s Directive 3000.05, for example, termed
"stability operations'' a core U.S. military mission that the Department of Defense shall be prepared to
conduct and support. They shall be given priority comparable to combat opera-lions." Stability operations
were defined as activities "conducted to help establish order that advances US. Interests and values. The
immediate goal often is to provide the local populace with security, restore essential services, and meet
humanitarian needs. The long term goal is to help develop Indigenous capacity for securing essential
services, a viable market economy, rule of law, democratic institutions, and a robust civil society.80 The
expansive set of activities potentially falling under stability operationssuch as economic development,
human rights promotion, social capacity-building, state-building, peacebuilding, justice enforcement,
gender protection, and rule of law promotionare familiar from the total intervention agenda. Why this
agenda should now come under the control of the U.S. military instead of being left to civilian agencies or
NGOs is clarified by a proponent: "the military has an important role to play as a development actor. Its
focus on countering threats to the United States makes it well-suited to performing development activities
linked directly to security objectives, both in combat zones and in more permissive environments."*1
According to this argument, using the military allows development and humanitarian interventions to be
closely tied to US. security concerns by way of AFRICOM s flexibility, lack of oversight, lack of
accountability, significant resources, and ability to work in conflict zones. AFRICOM will normally work
through and in conjunction with states, but it may also contract directly with "partners" at the substate
level, where it li reported that "relevant communities are increasingly approached directly, as has become
evident in new local participatory projects under the recent peace and security slogan
In northern Kenya, where such operations have been carried out by CTF HoA since the early 2000s,
studies have questioned the success of these projects even on the most narrow, technical level, as it
comes to appear that AFRJCOM's military characterprecisely what its proponents argue make n
suitable for such projectsprevents it from having the expertise, capacity, or patience needed for
successful community development. These projects have not led people to have better perceptions of
the United States, nor have they established governance In ungoverned areas. Instead of building
consent, the presence of the United States can provoke protest and resistance, often around fears
about the US. military poisoning bore holes, using them to dump toxic waste, or poisoning
animals.83 Although many Kenyans evidently eventually adopted a pragmatic attitude toward the
projects, they were under no illusion about whose interests had led the U.S. military there,84 and they
often declared that the U.S. presence was. if anything, making them less secure.85 Once again, U.S.
militarization, justified as bringing peace and stability, is perceived to fuel insecurity. The only strategic
success CJTF-HoA did register was to help allow the U.S. military to establish a presence (in preparation
for possible future "contingency operations") and gather some intelligence in those limited areas where
resistance was not too great.86
In northern Uganda, for many years there was no open U.S. military presence. For almost the first two
decades of the northern Uganda conflict, U.S. military involvement remained surreptitious, focused mainly
on providing support through Uganda to the SPLA. However, by 2007 American marines were openly
stationed in Kitgum, apparently with the cooperation of USAID, digging wells, vaccinating dogs, and
undertaking other humanitarian activities. Many Acholi were confused over what the US military was
doing and why it was undertaking protects that NGOs could carry out more efficiently. Many clearly
understood, as a friend put it ironically, that U.S. marines vaccinating dogs in Kitgum illustrated the fact
that some African dogs needed vaccinating more than others, and those roaming along the UgandaSudan border in the period leading up to the referendum in southern Sudan needed it the most.
Operation Natural Fire 10, conducted in Kitgum, exemplifies the dangerous consequences of the
militarization of humanitarianism in Africa.87 The operation had numerous purposes, among them
getting Ugandans used to seeing and dealing with U.S. military. As a public relations officer at the
American camp set up during the operation put it, "We want people to see the military as something other
than soldiers. In the U.S. soldiers are seen as heroes. In Uganda they have much more fear, so we are
trying to change that image. The intention is to blur the demarcations between civilian and

military."88 This is a frightening testament to the militarization of U.S. society, in which exporting
American values now becomes equated with exporting the U.S. military. More immediately, it also
shows how Natural Fire is conceived of as a public relations exercise both at the community level and at
the international level, as a slew of human interest stories about the operation (including of an American
nurse delivering a baby) were manufactured and disseminated. This normalization of the U.S. military
presence may have a very immediate goal: according to reports, the United States is seeking tenders for
a special-forces base in northern Uganda at present.
If its purpose really was, at least in part, to win hearts and minds. Operation Natural Fire appears to have
been a failure. More extensive research is needed, but evidence provided by anthropologist Cecilie
Lanken Verma shows the depth of resistance and anger that the militarization of services can provoke.
She reports the military takeover of the Kitgum hospital, closing it off to regular patients so that
people had to stand in line in the hot sun for hours or daysincluding those with serious illnesses,
pregnant mothers, and so onto get in. Of course, most did not. Verma reports people yelling at her and
demanding answers, thinking she was part of the operation. In fact, the public relations officer Verma
spoke to was particularly excited that AFRICOM had hit on the strategy of offering free health care in a
devastated region as a way of creating the opportunity to practice crowd control techniques at the same
time. Verma does not report open violence, but if people began protesting or rioting in reaction to the
abuse being meted out on them by AFRICOM, it is clear that the military nature of the operation and
its training in crowd control would quickly come to the fore.
Verma reports that the majority of comments she heard from Acholi were highly critical of the
operation. As one person in Kitgum told her, "Whatever they Miy on the radio, I don't helieve them. There
is definitely something political which they are not telling. Bringing drugs to the people, no, it is not to be
believed, really." An Acholi elder was thorough in his condemnation of the operation:
I am holding the government responsible and I have asked that the local councilor to come and explain to
us here how those people got permission to use our homeland for their purposes. They have not
explained that to us before they came and they have not asked for our permission, nor for our
advice. It is very queer and I want them to explain. And if they are after our minerals, they should bring it
out clearly. I don't trust our government and it is our government who invited the Americans.... If they want
to bring medicine, why can't they bring it to our health centers and hospitals so that the services improve
there? Why do they have to come and make a big show? Why must it be soldiers? Don't we have
medical personnel from here? They come as if this is no man's land, ready for occupation. No,
this is not no man's land. This is Acholiland!
The main consequence of these humanitarian and development operation*, like much of U.S. policy in
Africa, is militarization, this time of communities, services, and relief aid, with serious impacts on
places where these militarized interventions take place. Even if the extent of these operations is
limited, where they do take place AFRICOM directly incorporates administrative violence into its
development and humanitarian activities, with the result that resistance becomes difficult and may be
more likely to be met with violence. Protest against the destructive consequences of a U.S. military
presence or against aid agencies working alongside the U.S. military can be seen as a challenge to the
U.S. military, and peaceful civilian protest may become a target of administrative violence.69
Whereas aid agencies can, if they see lit, refuse aid to uncooperative beneficiaries, or at most plead
for external military support, military humanitarianism has its own guns to turn on recalcitrant
The militarization of relations between civilians and humanitarian or development actors can prevent
political relationslet alone relations of accountabilityfrom developing, which can set the stage for
further violence.90 The involvement of UN peacekeepers in prostitution rings and sexual exploitation
enterprises in Kosovo, DRC, and elsewhere is only one of the more sensational aspects of this
pathological disjuncture between humanitarian military forces and the populations they are supposed to
serve. Former U.S. Army Colonel Ann Wright warned against deploying U.S. soldiers in the DRC, citing
the high number of rape and violent sexual assault cases in the U.S. military and by US, military
personnel against women and girls in areas around U.S. military bases.91 As she stated. "If the women
of the Congo should Google. 'U.S. militarysexual assault and rape.' I suspect they will decline
the offer of assistance from the African Command." African gender-rights activists have also high
lighted the potential for AFRICOM to undermine efforts to demilitarize African communities.92
AFRICOMs approach can militarize humanitarian and development interventions and the African
communities where they take place. As Jeremy Keenan concludes, While AFRICOMs commanders have

been preaching security and development, their operations on the ground have so far created
insecurity and undermined democratic expressions of civil society.93

The strategic drive towards resiliency entrenches catastrophe as a way of life

ensures widespread violence
Evans, Senior Lecturer in International relations at the School of Sociology, Politics &
International Studies (SPAIS), University of Bristol, Founder and Director of the
histories of violence project, 15
(Evans, Resilience: International Policies, Practices and Discourses, Resilience, 2015)
Remarkably, by any conceivable democratic measure, this world does not need to be imagined. Nor is the
question whether you would sign such a charter that is so fundamentally at odds with the social contracts
that have been foundational to most Western societies. It has already been drafted, signed on your behalf
and endorsed as a new political creed for contemporary liberal societies.
Outlined earlier are the key elements of the doctrine of resilience that we argued has become the new
social morphology for our societies that are defined by inescapable crises of catastrophe. Although
evidencing early traces in the fields of ecology, sustainable development and child welfare and support,
the resilience doctrine we showed has extended into global and local forms of political reasoning in
ways that are radically changing the logic of governance and political rule.
Indeed, it is all about producing new modes of subjectivity attuned to the age of catastrophe. We are all
asked to think in terms of resilience. None of us can be exempt from the benevolence of its claims or
the scope of its reasoning. Nor can we detach ourselves from the profound influence it is having on
modes of political authentication and disqualification so central to regimes of power. Even beginning to
question the logic of those who abide by the resilience doctrine now implies that a person is no longer
part of the reasoned majority. We would do well then to remind ourselves here of Deleuzes intervention:
those who speak for the majority are always, from the perspective of power, a minority that
deploys universal language to suffocate the numerical majorities who continue to find reasons to
believe in this world.
Speaking in the most universal and empowering of humanistic tones, resiliently minded protagonists are
nevertheless, we argued, rewriting the rules of the political game by appealing to the universal
survivor in all of us. And by wrapping themselves in a scientific mantra that appeals to the common
sense of our shared perception of endangerment, what we used to call positivism has been displaced by
the appropriation of once critically supposed ontologies of vulnerability to leave us dangerously exposed
and accepting of our insecure predicament.
For us, the political and philosophical stakes could not have been more pronounced. Beneath the
veneer of concern with security from death, violence and everyday dangers, we argued lurks a deeply
nihilistic way of thinking about the very nature of what it is to live. Resilience has created an image of a
world in which the very phenomena of violence and insecurity are assumed as natural and
incontestable. All things are insecure by design. In a sense, then, resilience, in conceiving the world as
such, does immense violence to our very sensibilities concerning the possibility of ever achieving
meaningful peace and security.
The real tragedy for us is the way the doctrine forces us to become active participants in our own depoliticisation. Resilience encourages us to learn from the violence of catastrophic events so that we can
become more responsive to further catastrophes on the horizon. It promotes adaptability so that life may
go on living despite experiencing certain destruction. Indeed it even demands a certain exposure to the
threat before its occurrence so that we can be better prepared. Resilience as such appears to be a form
of immunisation.
We internalise the catastrophic to the creation of new epistemic communities that are more aware
of their vulnerabilities. What is more, setting aside any utopian vision of a promissory world that may be
conceived otherwise, resilience looks to the future as an endemic terrain of catastrophe that is
already populated by the ruins of the present. We argued that there was a distinct lethal principle at
work here, which is profoundly different to that of sovereignty. While the lethality of sovereignty is invested
in the ability to annihilate the other, resilience exposes the self to a dose of lethality to stave off something
altogether more terminal. In this regard, it proves to be a form of selfannihilation insomuch as lethality is

internalised to be a resource for knowledge and understanding that may be drawn upon. What does not
kill you only makes you stronger, providing of course you are trained in the art of survival.

Accepting vulnerability ends the neoliberal vision of life-as-risk that guarantees

Evans, Senior Lecturer in International relations at the School of Sociology, Politics &
International Studies (SPAIS), University of Bristol, Founder and Director of the
histories of violence project, 15
(Evans, Resilience: International Policies, Practices and Discourses, Resilience, 2015)
Our thesis has been that resilience now authenticates who we are as people. Adaptability in the face of
crisis emphasises our resourcefulness, our abilities to thrive in times of risk and our life-affirming qualities
that refuse to surrender to all forms of endangerment. Such reasoning we maintained is fully compatible
with neoliberalism and its promotion of risk, along with its private commitment to the care for the
self. It is precisely through the promotion of ontologies of vulnerability instead of ontologies of
oppression that we learn to accept that things are simply crises ridden and ultimately
catastrophically fated. In short, while globalisation comes to us in many forms, the forces that bring
about change are quite literally out of our hands.
This inevitably brings us to the question of bio-politics today. Students will appreciate that we have written
extensively about the bio-politics of security, war and violence. Further, as we argued in the book, the biopolitics of today is not the bio-politics of Michel Foucault. Indeed, whilst we accept that resilience is a
novel form of bio-political intervention that suspends life in a system of temporal purgatory
catastrophically fated unto the end if our concern is to rid ourselves of the nihilism of contemporary
liberalism, most purposefully expressed in the logic of the bio-politics of resilience , we must look to
develop new modes of subjectivity beyond the bio-political reckoning.
This is not a call to forget Foucault (whatever that may mean). Foucault is not read widely enough. We
have never been convinced by those who would reduce Foucault to the question of truth, without ever
engaging with his evident courage to truth as aptly titled in a recently transcribed lecture series. Nor have
we been convinced by those who claim that bio-politics is a reified paradigm divorced from the everyday
operations of power. Power, as Foucault always maintained, is as multiple as the problem of life itself.
Our deployment of the bio-political analytic has always retained this methodological commitment to
address the micro-physics of power and how this builds up into universal claims to truth that are globally
expansive in ambition. What is liberalism after all if not some planetary vision for political order premised
upon the need to foreground life itself as central to all political strategies?
We are however tired of addressing the political failures of liberal modernity. Its claims to improve
and enrich human existence have proved to be unfounded. It betrays a terrible deceit as deliverance of
security, peace and justice echoes the continued calls for catastrophe, war and profound suspicion on the
nature of the subject. And to repeat, we are also exhausted by resilience. It nihilism is devastating. Its
political language enslaving. Its modes of subjectivity lamenting. And its political imagination notably
absent. That is why we have decided after this volume to never write, publicly lecture or debate the
problematic again. We will not engage with those who would have us brought into some dialectical orbit in
order to validate its reverence by making it some master signifier in order to prove its majoritarian
position. Yes, the doctrine of resilience at the level of policy and power is ubiquitous. And yet in terms of
emancipating the political, it is already dead.
Moving forward, then, the task at hand appears to be clear. Liberalism itself is facing lasting crises.
Politically, economically and ethically bankrupt, what remains is a siege mentality that breeds anxiety and
insecurity as the new normality for human cohabitation. This is the end of liberal times a
catastrophic unfolding that is fated to end without any hope of a better time to come. Faced therefore with
the veritable erasure of the human subject as it is forcibly denied any meaningful claim beyond the level
of its endangered ecology, what we already argued in the conclusion to Resilient Life is the need to
develop a new political imagination that allows us to be liberated from the entrapments of this tragically
fated and subjugating condition. Not only does this require us to rethink what a meaningful existence
might entail. It demands that we reclaim from the dogmatism of political science the very idea that
politics is a poetic art form that enables us to critically expose the nihilism of the present and
imagine better worlds to come.

That is why we are now working on a project that demands a return to the original philosophical rupture
the poetic to speak of a new imaginary for rethinking politics, emancipation and the formation of
political communities in the twenty-first century. Moving beyond the bio-politics of liberalism and its
fundamental ontology of vulnerability, which is most purposefully expressed in the context of resilience,
leads to nihilistic lament and entrapments of suffering; the poetic subject demands a more confident
political register that openly welcomes a more crafted art for living dangerously. This is not a call to
retreat back into earlier modes of thinking on security and justice. It is a call for a different
concept of the political, which disavowing narratives of survivability and endangerment, proposes a
forceful account of the politics of love essential to a new consciousness for human togetherness.
Our method has always been to argue that reified approaches to politics actually prevent people
from thinking. Some have accused us in turn of reifying liberalism as a paradigm for power and
resilience as an epoch changing doctrine. Our response is twofold. First, pay attention to all those now
connecting the politics of catastrophe to the Anthropocene at the level of discourse, policy-making, and
the justificatory measures for funding and political interventions. IT IS PRESENTED AS AN EPOCH. We
merely set out to critique what this means in order to expose the hidden order of its politics. And second,
we would simply request that critics read the text. Nowhere do we say that everybody has become a
resilient subject. The grandiose claims liberals always make about the universal nature of
subjectivities have never been matched by reality. Indeed, we are not setting out to counter the nihilism
of resilience with an alternative universal blueprint for more emancipated subjectivities. Such an
approach echoes the violence of the most dangerous vanguardism that continues to suffocate the
Left (especially in its contemporary Maoist inspired variants).

Recognizing the connection between global and local forms of policing is the
best starting point for politics
Hongyu Wang, Ph.d., Professor, STCL - Curriculum Studies, 2014, A Nonviolent Perspective on
Internationalizing Curriculum Studies, International Handbook of Curriculum Research, Ch. 5 Routledge
In the first edition of this Handbook. William K Pinar (2003) discusses the importance of focusing on
education and curriculum, rather than international political tensions, for the internationalization of
curriculum studies. If we have scholars acting as if diplomatic representatives of their own countries, the
intellectual and educational possibility will be lost in power struggles. Actually, in political and social
movements, the egocentric pursuit of political authority and control, either for an individual or for a
group, can hardly lead to any success, (lhandi (1942/2007) specifically points out that the nonviolence
movement is "not a program of seizure of power" but "a program of transformation of relationships"
(p. 40). In the Liberian women's peace movement in 2003, they adopted the strategy of not criticizing the
political policies of the dictatorshipeven though there were more than plenty to criticizebut demanding
of peace unyieldingly and wholeheartedly (Disney & Ritickcr, 2(108; Cibowce, 2011).
Paradoxically, the key to winning social and political victories in nonviolence movements is to
abandon the politics of power struggle and instead to mobilize every participant in the powerful
process of transforming the nature of relationships from dominating/being dominated to organic
interconnectedness. If we cannot go beyond the confinement of national, group, or individual selfinterest, there is no possibility of achieving "heart unity" with others who arc distant or/and different
from us. Here it is essential not only to dwell in international space, but also to move towards
transnational space.
The inter-space and trans-space are both important for creating nonviolent dynamics of the local, the
national. and the global through transforming relationships. The term "international" acknowledges the "in
between" fluid spaces where multiplicity and differences are neither excluded nor self-contained.
Moreover, internationalization as a conceptsupports the decentering of both the national and the
global through a focus on interaction and relationship that lead to the transformation of both locality
and globalness. To borrow the language of chaos and complexity theory (Doll. 20121, the newness of
the global comes from a dynamic interaction of local parts. Also as Peter Hershock (2009) argues, it is a
fallacy lo assume that "whatever is good for each and every one of us (individually) will be good for all of
us (communally or ecologically)" (p. 156) since what is good for the local may become detrimental to the
ecological or the global. Therefore, the global us the whole is more than the addition of (he national or the
local, but emerges from interactive dynamics and is marked by organic relationality.

Noel Gough (2003) suggests that "internationalizing curriculum inquiry might best be understood as a
process of creating transnational spaces in which scholars from different localities collaborate in
reframing and decentering their own knowledge traditions and negotiate trust in each other's
contributions to their collective work" (p. 6S). The very usage of "trans-"' indicates both an intense
experiencing of (the boundary and an effort to go beyond that boundary. Such transnational spaces not
only sustain hybrid movements but also support embodied work to negotiate collaborative trust.
Nonviolence education must be an embodied process. Sherry B. Shapiro (2002) asserts that it is the joy
and suffering of the human body that extends "beyond the boundaries of nationality, rice, ethnicity,
gender, social class, or sexual or religious preferenceall the ways of marking ourselves off from others"
(p. I4U). Peace and nonviolence education need to sensitize us to the collective body, and
pedagogically we need to begin with the body as the connector between the public and the private, and
between social identity and a wider shared experience.
In such dynamics of international and transnational movements, identity is destabilized, power struggles
are displaced into fluid modes of relationships, and nonviolent relationality across differences become
multidimensionalboth horizontal (among the local) and vertical (between the local and the global l. and
both top-down (from the global to the individual body) and bottom-up (from the local to the international)
to form a network of nonviolence. Instead of intensifying the fragmentation (due to dualism) that marks
the fragility of the modern life we share, the nonviolent modes of relationalily we choose to establish can
contribute to the integrative potential of the network.
For the dynamics of intergroup relationships within the national, I reference the American field of
curriculum studies as an example due to my familiarity with it. Pinar (2013) identifies "power, identity, and
discourse" as the key concepts of the reconceptualized curriculum field in the United States, hut he
suggests that these concepts have become assumptionsdue to their successand that these newly
taken-for-granted concepts have tendencies toward totalization and reductionism. Now the assumption
that "power predominates, that identity is central, and that discourse is determinative (e.g. our research
provides only narratives, never truth)are widely shared" (p. 8). Accepted as given, they have become
"abstractions split off from the concrete complexity of the historical moment" <p. S) and exhausted
in self-referentiality. Ironically, the central emphasis of identity leads to the casually of individual agency
and subjective specificity.
As both an observer and participant of the American field of curriculum studies who came from China in
1996, I also would like to add another causality: organic relationality. The complexity and richness in the
singularity of each individual or group coexists with the complicated and organic relationality of
humanity and life, and when one side of the coin is undermined, ihe other side deteriorates as well.
While Pinar (2013) discusses the proliferation of "uncertainty" and "dispersion" in post structural discourses and their elicits. I also think ihe distance between self and other stretched by the post-structural
discourses of otherness and the unknown Other may lead to the difficulty of nm being able to bring self
and other back into the fabric of relationality (Wang, in press). In addressing "difference-centered politics
of recognition and respect." drawing upon the Buddhist philosophy. Peter Hershock I20O9) argues for "a
concerted shift from considerations of how much we are the same or different from each |sic | another to
how we might best differ for one another" (p. 1611: emphasis in original).
In a nondualistic. nonviolent view, subject and object, body and mind, and self and other exist
interdependent!). Hershock's perception of differences as essential for mutual contribution and shared
welfare, as something positive that should not be erased or elevated, but as a part of a relationship
network, is a challenge not only to the liberal notion of the individual as autonomous, but also to the
identity politics of static diversity or the postmodern radicalization of singularity. The nonviolent relational
dynamics of "differing for" rather than "differing from" are particularly imperative under the context of a
profoundly shared sense of crisis in American public education. While particular differences such as racial
or gendered differences must he discussed, the discussions need to orient towards changing our ways of
relating to others and addressing the root course of social violence, rather than fixing on any particular
social identity. Nonviolence cannot exist without social justice, but social justice for one group at the
expense of the welfare of others docs not do justice to the shared human struggle for the common good
of all.
Confronting the crisis in American public education, I suggest that challenging the violence of the
conservative forces and working through the depressive position of educators in relation to the external
attack from non-education sectors, we are called to form nonviolent relationships among different social
groups and their affiliated scholarly camps. Identity-based struggles, when contextualized in the

interconnected web of life, have played a progressive role in the field. However, without contextualizing
and complicating one's own investment in a broader project of education for all, without taking a step
back from one's own particular subjective positioning to see a bigger picture, any fixation upon one
group's strugglealong or within the lines of cither nice, gender, class, sexuality, nation, or other social
factorsat the expense of the collective good arrests democracy as an unfulfilled dream,
If we can initiate and participate in nonviolent dynamics of "differing for" an educationally informed,
compassion-ale community across local and national borders, we are also challenging the
international domination of American politics, along with its domestically repressive educational
"reform" demand for raising test scores and maintaining global control. This suggestion is certainly not
about subsuming diversity into uniformity, as any network has room for breaks and fragmentations.
The organic relationalty of nonviolence welcomes differences and does not avoid conflicts because it
has the ability to stretch, transform, and rebuild.
Moving from the national to the international level, the dualism of "us" versus "them" has played a violent
role in global relationships, and the possibility of moving beyond such a fixed boundary depends upon
our capacity for refusing to dehumanize the other, both the friendly other and the hostile other.
Through the psychoanalytic notion of "the stranger to ourselves." Julia Kristeva (1993) invites us "to
recognize ourselves as strange in order better to appreciate the foreigners outside us instead of striving to
bend them to the norms of our own repression" (p. 29). If we are aware of our subconscious rather than
repressing it. aliens are no longer a threat to us. Kristeva believes that a transnational or international
position is situated at the crossing of boundaries, which simultaneously affirms and transcends national
borders. The idea of nation "at the same time affirmed as a space of freedom and dissolved in its own
identity" (p. 32) affirms both the protective function of identification and the necessity of border-crossing.
Situated at the fluid border, "nations without nationalism" support nonviolent relationality.

Demands of dis-intervention are key, even if we cant do it in practice, they create

a new language that reclaims governance free of militarized influence
Branch, Lecturer in African Politics, Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of
Cambridge as University, 11
(Adam, Displacing Human Rights: War and Intervention in Northern Uganda, Oxford University Press, Jul
25, 2011, Ch. 8)
This book has argued that the dominant Western concept of human rights in AfricaAfrica as a terrain of
permanent human rights crises that require expansive and intensive interventions for their resolution
informs interventions that can lead to the entrenchment of antidemocratic states and political
forces, depo-liticize African citizenries, and facilitate and mediate international forms of inequality,
domination, and violence, all with destructive consequences that may include enabling, prolonging, or
intensifying the very conflicts, violence, and injustices the interventions claim to resolve. To contest
this antidemocratic, interventionist, and often counterproductive deployment of human rights in Africa, I
want to return to Issa Shivji's call, made over 20 years ago, for the development of concepts of human
rights that will serve a politically emancipatory role in Africa's current historical and political context
instead of helping to entrench injustice. Shivji himself emphasized the emancipatory potential of the rights
to organization and self-determination in order to combat African authoritarianism and foreign interference
through legitimating and mobilizing democratic, anti-imperialist political action.1
In today's neoliberal Africa, characterized by multiple forms of disciplinary dcpoliticization and
militarization, Shivjis emphasis on the human rights to organization and self-determination as a route to
justice and democracy still resonates. In this chapter, I first argue that a broadened right to organization
can underpin processes of democratic politicization, even in the face of transnational administration
and violence. From there, I argue that the right to organization implies the right to self-determination and
requires a shift from sovereignty as responsibility to popular sovereignty. These anti-interventionist
reconceptualizations of human rights and sovereignty also imply the need to reconceptualizc peace.
Peace is not a matter of imposing a static model of social, political, legal, or cultural order on Africa, of
pacification and stabilization, but rather ol opening up social, political, legal, and cultural orders to
democratic determination. Social and political order are to be made subject to different demands for
justice, and thus justice itself is realized through this ongoing process of inclusive mobilization and action.

Finally, violence needs to be reconceptualized. Just as interventionist human rights discourses are
associated with a particular image of violence in Africa, in which that violence is indigenous and politically
meaningless, the anti-interventionist concept of human rights developed here is associated with a
transnational understanding that foregrounds existing Western responsibility for political violence
instead of absolving the West of accountability. Based upon this, I argue that the dominant practice of
the West toward Africa should be one of constructive dis-intervention, one of ending Western
intervention, f
or the sake of human rights. I offer two qualifications to this agenda of disintcrvention, however. First,
given the reality of episodes of extreme violence in Africa, during which questions of respecting selfdetermination and self-organization may become somewhat insignificant relative to the need to end mass
violence, I leave space in this general disinterventionist agenda for a practice of humanitarian
intervention focused on the cessation of hostilitiesan Africanized practice within specific limits and
made legally accountable. Second, given the reality of common political problems faced by Africa and the
West, I leave open the possibility of a limited form of solidarity, what I call solidarity with consequences,
which is based on the possibility of organizing and acting politically, but always self-critically, when
faced with common struggles that bridge the Africa-West divide.
1. Human Rights and Popular Sovereignty
A foundation for a democratic, noninterventionist concept of human rights can be found in Claude Lefort's
1980 "Politics and Human Rights," which makes a strong argument for human rights as a foundation of
democratic politics. Lefort attempts to refute Marx's classic denunciation ot human rights as amounting to
no more than the legal embodiment of egoistical, bourgeois man. Lefort, instead, argues that Marx
ignores those rights that, rather than implying egoistical, monadic man, imply man's capacity to think,
communicate, and act with others. That is, while Marx focuses his attack on the rights to private property
and security, he ignores the rights to freedom of opinion, speech, assembly, and organization, essential to
democratic politics. These latter rights, instead of isolating individuals, carve out a public space for
collective opinion formation and action and "point to a sphere which is ineffaceably external to
power."2 They establish the legitimacy of and freedom for collective action and for thought itselt in the
face of power and have the capacity to bring people together as freely communicating individuals oriented
toward common goals.3
Lefort expands on the importance of human rights for democratic politics, arguing that "Rights cannot be
dissociated from the awareness of rights."4 That is human rights work by providing a language that
allows people to understand themselves as rights-bearing agents, thus giving shape and
legitimacy to their struggles. As people come to see themselves in this way, they begin a process of
inclusive politicization that cannot be reversed. Lefort represents the struggle for human rights as a
struggle over the preconditions for democratic politics. By demanding their rights, people are not
only demanding the space in which they will be able to enjoy these freedoms, but, in the very act
of making those demands, they are doing what is to be guaranteed by the right itself. Human rights
become both form and content of democratic organization and action: the right to the freedom of speech
is won through speaking treely; the right to organize is won through organization. The dissemination of
the language of human rights not only catalyzes the struggle for those rights whose guarantee is
the formal foundation of independent thought and action, and thus of democracy, but also leads,
through the struggle itself, to the actualization of that independent thought and action which is the
concrete foundation of democracy.
This democratic concept of human rights is characterized by a focus on rights that imply relationships
among people, such that human rights are about collective deliberation and action, not about individual
testimony or external provision of goods or protection. The agency for demanding rights comes from
organized collectives whose rights are to be guaranteed in common, by the oppressed against their
oppressors, and not "claimed" by those who take an interest, however genuine, in alleviating the suffering
of others. Rights claims are not directed toward an unaccountable, ideologized "international
community," but rather toward building political communities and then toward those institutionalized
sites that retain a degree of responsiveness due to their dependence upon the people for legitimacy and
authority. As long as international institutions have only a philanthropic relationship with people in the
South, they are unaccountable politically and have no compulsion to respond, and so the nation-state

remains the only political institution in which that compulsion can be found, however attenuated it may be
as a result of states' reliance upon violence and donor support.



Totalizing accounts of power freeze resistance working within structures of
power creates spaces of meaning contra oppressive scripts
Laura Zanotti, Ph.D., Virginia Tech, 13
(Governmentality, Ontology, Methodology: Re-thinking Political Agency in the Global World, Alternatives:
Global, Local, Political 201X, Vol XX(X) 117)
Political agency is not portrayed as the free subjects total rejection of a unified totalizing assemblage of
power. While (the colonizers) power attempts to reproduce its script by creating the mimic men, that is,
the docile colonial subjects who are almost the same, but not quite,70 it also creates an ambivalence,
a contradiction between same and not quite that can be appropriated by the subaltern. Mimicry is
easily camouflaged as mockery, with the colonial subject consequently subverting or refusing to simply
repeat the masters lessons. Instead of producing a controlled imitation or a managed response from the
native, the civilizing mission elicits an answer back, a menacing look, a distorted and disturbing echo.71
Agency is exerted through moves that are imbricated with discourses of power but also recognize
and question them. In this way, universal claims are unsettled and powers purported unity menaced.
Bhabha sends a note of caution to those whose response to subjection is direct opposition, a warning
that overcoming domination, far from getting rid of it, often occasions its mere reversal.72 Thus,
Ilan Kapoor suggests that the agent must play with the cards s/he is dealt, and the hegemon, despite
the appearance of absolute strength, needs or desires the subaltern.73
Purity of identity may not ever have been a possibility, even less when the very ideas of what
accounts for identity and alterity are being rapidly reworked. In relying on Foucaults understanding
of power and on feminist elaborations of Identity,74 Roland Bleiker has embraced a non-substantialist
standpoint and the acceptance of ambiguity as central for conceptualizing human
agency and for exploring its actual transformative possibilities. Bleiker questions positions that see
agency as a reflection of externally imposed circumstances as well as traditions that bestow the
human subject . . . with a relatively large sense of autonomy.75 Assumptions of fundamental
autonomy (or freedom) would freeze a specific image of human agency to the detriment of all
others.76 As Bleiker puts it: A conceptualization of human agency cannot be based on a parsimonious
proposition, a one-sentence statement that captures something like an authentic nature of human agency.
There is no essence to human agency, no core that can be brought down to a lowest
common denominator, that will crystallize one day in a long sought after magic formula. A search
for such an elusive centre would freeze a specific image of human agency to the detriment of all
For Bleiker, universals are indeed tainted with an imperial flavor. This includes the imperialism
of ideas of identity based on liberty and freedom (rather than imbrication, situatedness, and
relationality) as the ontological horizon for understanding human nature and assessing political
agency. Non-substantialist positions do not assume the existence of monolithic power scripts or
ontologically autonomous subjects; do not establish linear links between intentions and outcomes,
and do not assume that every form of agency needs an identifiable agent. Instead, they call for
careful attention to contexts. In this disposition, Bleiker advocates a modest conceptualization of
agency, one that relies upon Michel de Certeaus operational schemes, Judith Butlers contingent
foundations, or Gilles Deleuzes rhizomes.78
In a similar vein, in a refreshing reading of realism, Brent Steele has highlighted the problematic
aspects of assessing political agency based upon actors intention and focused on contexts as the
yardstick for assessing political actions.79 For Steele, as actors practice their agency within the
space of a public sphere, intentionalityat bestbecomes dynamic as new spaces in that sphere
open up. Intentions, even if they are genuine, become largely irrelevant in such a dynamic, violent,
and vibrant realm of human interaction.80 In shifting attention from intention to the context that
made some actions possible, Steele sees agency as a redescription of existing conditions, rather
than the total rejection of or opposition to a totalizing script. As a consequence, Steele

advocates pragmatist humility for politicians and scholars as well.81 In summary, in nonsubstantialist frameworks, agency is conceptualized as modest and multifarious agonic interactions,
localized tactics, hybridized engagement and redescriptions, a series of uncertain and situated responses
to ambiguous discourses and practices of power aimed at the construction of new openings, possibilities
and different distributive processes, the outcomes of which are always to an extent unpredictable. Political
agency here is not imagined as a quest for individual authenticity in opposition to a unitary
nefarious oppressive Leviathan aimed at the creation of a
better totality where subjects can float freed of oppression, or a multitude made into a unified
subject will reverse the might of Empire and bring about a condition of immanent social justice.
By not reifying power as a script and subject as monads endowed with freedom non-substantialist
positions open the way for conceptualizing political agency as an engagement imbricated in praxis.
The ethical virtue that is called for is pragmatist humility, that is the patience of playing with the
cards that are dealt to us, enacting redescriptions and devising tactics for tinkering82 with what exists
in specific contexts.
In this article, I have argued that, notwithstanding their critical stance, scholars who use governmentality
as a descriptive tool remain rooted in substantialist ontologies that see power and subjects as
standing in a relation of externality. They also downplay processes of coconstitution and the importance
of indeterminacy and ambiguity as the very space where political agency can thrive. In this way, they
drastically limit the possibility for imagining political agency outside the liberal straightjacket.
They represent international liberal biopolitical and governmental power as a homogenous
and totalizing formation whose scripts effectively oppress subjects, that are in turn imagined
as free by nature. Transformations of power modalities through multifarious tactics of hybridization
and redescriptions are not considered as options. The complexity of politics is reduced to homogenizing
and/or romanticizing narratives and political engagements are reduced to total heroic
rejections or to revolutionary moments.
By questioning substantialist representations of power and subjects, inquiries on the possibilities
of political agency are reframed in a way that focuses on power and subjects relational character and
the contingent processes of their (trans)formation in the context of agonic relations. Options for
resistance to governmental scripts are not limited to rejection, revolution, or dispossession
to regain a pristine freedom from all constraints or an immanent ideal social order. It is found
instead in multifarious and contingent struggles that are constituted within the scripts of
governmental rationalities and at the same time exceed and transform them. This approach questions
oversimplifications of the complexities of liberal political rationalities and of their interactions with
non-liberal political players and nurtures a radical skepticism about identifying universally good or
bad actors or abstract solutions to political problems. International power interacts in complex ways
with diverse political spaces and within these spaces it is appropriated, hybridized, redescribed,
hijacked, and tinkered with.
Governmentality as a heuristic focuses on performing complex diagnostics of events. It invites
historically situated explorations and careful differentiations rather than overarching demonizations
of power, romanticizations of the rebel or the the local. More broadly, theoretical formulations
that conceive the subject in non-substantialist terms and focus on processes of subjectification,
on the ambiguity of power discourses, and on hybridization as the terrain for political transformation,
open ways for reconsidering political agency beyond the dichotomy of oppression/rebellion.
These alternative formulations also foster an ethics of political engagement, to be continuously taken
up through plural and uncertain practices, that demand continuous attention to what happens
instead of fixations on what ought to be.83 Such ethics of engagement would not await the
revolution to come or hope for a pristine freedom to be regained. Instead, it would constantly
attempt to twist the working of power by playing with whatever cards are available and would
require intense processes of reflexivity on the consequences of political choices. To conclude with
a famous phrase by Michel Foucault my point is not that everything is bad, but that everything is
dangerous, which is not exactly the same as bad. If everything is dangerous, then we always have
something to do. So my position leads not to apathy but to hyper- and pessimistic activism.84

The alt is not mutually exclusive with the aff we can apply infinite perspectives
to reach the best solution dont throw out expertism without evaluating its
Kathleen Higgins, University of Texas-Austin, Philosophy Professor, Winter 2013, Post-Truth Pluralism:
The Unlikely Political Wisdom of Friedrich Nietzche, Kindle
Progressives are right that we live increasingly in a post-truth era, but rather than rejecting it and pining
nostalgically for a return to a more truthful time, we should learn to better navigate it. Where the New York
Times and Walter Cronkite were once viewed as arbiters of public truths, today the Times competes with
the Wall Street Journal, and CBS News with FOX News and MSNBC, in describing reality. The Internet
multiplies the perspectives and truths available for public consumption. The diversity of viewpoints
opened up by new media is not going away and is likely to intensify. This diversity of interpretations of
reality is part of a longstanding trend. Democracy and modernization have brought a proliferation of
worldviews and declining authority of traditional institutions to meanings. Citizens have more freedom to
create new interpretations of facts.
This proliferation of viewpoints makes the challenge of democratically addressing contemporary problems
more complex. One consequence of all this is that our problems become more wicked and more subject
to conflicting meanings and agendas. We cant agree on the nature of problems or their solutions
because of fundamentally unbridgeable values and worldviews. In attempting to reduce political
disagreement to black and white categories of fact and fiction, progressives themselves uniquely illequipped to address our current difficulties, or to advance liberal values in the culture.
A new progressive politics should have a different understanding of the truth than the one suggested by
the critics of conservative dishonesty. We should understand that human beings make meaning and
apprehend truth from radically different standpoints and worldviews, and that our great wealth and
freedom will likely lead to more, not fewer, disagreements about the world. Nietzsche was no democrat,
but the pluralism he offers can be encouragement to todays political class, as well as the rest of us, to
become more self-aware of, and honest about, how our standpoint, values, and power affect our
determinations of what is true and what is false.
In the posttruth era, we should be able to articulate not one but many different perspectives.
Progressives seeking to govern and change society cannot be free of bias, interests, and passions, but
they should strive to be aware of them so that they can adopt different eyes to see the world from the
standpoint of their fiercest opponents. Taking multiple perspectives into account might alert us to more
sites of possible intervention and prime us for creative formulations of alternative possibilities for
concerted responses to our problems.
Our era, in short, need not be an obstacle to taking common action. We might see todays divided expert
class and fractions public not as temporary problems to be solved by more reason, science, and truth, but
rather as permanent features of our developed democracy. We might even see this proliferation of belief
systems and worldviews as an opportunity for human development. We can agree to disagree and still
engage in pragmatic action in the World.


Resistance isnt impossible because of anti-blackness it is embedded in
society, but we can still open up spaces to end practices that develop suffering
Branch, Lecturer in African Politics, Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of
Cambridge as University, 11
(Adam, Displacing Human Rights: War and Intervention in Northern Uganda, Oxford University Press, Jul
25, 2011, Ch. 8)
or the sake of human rights. I offer two qualifications to this agenda of disintcrvention, however. First,
given the reality of episodes of extreme violence in Africa, during which questions of respecting selfdetermination and self-organization may become somewhat insignificant relative to the need to end mass
violence, I leave space in this general disinterventionist agenda for a practice of humanitarian
intervention focused on the cessation of hostilitiesan Africanized practice within specific limits and
made legally accountable. Second, given the reality of common political problems faced by Africa and the
West, I leave open the possibility of a limited form of solidarity, what I call solidarity with consequences,
which is based on the possibility of organizing and acting politically, but always self-critically, when
faced with common struggles that bridge the Africa-West divide.
1. Human Rights and Popular Sovereignty
A foundation for a democratic, noninterventionist concept of human rights can be found in Claude Lefort's
1980 "Politics and Human Rights," which makes a strong argument for human rights as a foundation of
democratic politics. Lefort attempts to refute Marx's classic denunciation ot human rights as amounting to
no more than the legal embodiment of egoistical, bourgeois man. Lefort, instead, argues that Marx
ignores those rights that, rather than implying egoistical, monadic man, imply man's capacity to think,
communicate, and act with others. That is, while Marx focuses his attack on the rights to private property
and security, he ignores the rights to freedom of opinion, speech, assembly, and organization, essential to
democratic politics. These latter rights, instead of isolating individuals, carve out a public space for
collective opinion formation and action and "point to a sphere which is ineffaceably external to
power."2 They establish the legitimacy of and freedom for collective action and for thought itselt in the
face of power and have the capacity to bring people together as freely communicating individuals oriented
toward common goals.3
Lefort expands on the importance of human rights for democratic politics, arguing that "Rights cannot be
dissociated from the awareness of rights."4 That is human rights work by providing a language that
allows people to understand themselves as rights-bearing agents, thus giving shape and
legitimacy to their struggles. As people come to see themselves in this way, they begin a process of
inclusive politicization that cannot be reversed. Lefort represents the struggle for human rights as a
struggle over the preconditions for democratic politics. By demanding their rights, people are not
only demanding the space in which they will be able to enjoy these freedoms, but, in the very act
of making those demands, they are doing what is to be guaranteed by the right itself. Human rights
become both form and content of democratic organization and action: the right to the freedom of speech
is won through speaking treely; the right to organize is won through organization. The dissemination of
the language of human rights not only catalyzes the struggle for those rights whose guarantee is
the formal foundation of independent thought and action, and thus of democracy, but also leads,
through the struggle itself, to the actualization of that independent thought and action which is the
concrete foundation of democracy.
This democratic concept of human rights is characterized by a focus on rights that imply relationships
among people, such that human rights are about collective deliberation and action, not about individual
testimony or external provision of goods or protection. The agency for demanding rights comes from
organized collectives whose rights are to be guaranteed in common, by the oppressed against their
oppressors, and not "claimed" by those who take an interest, however genuine, in alleviating the suffering
of others. Rights claims are not directed toward an unaccountable, ideologized "international

community," but rather toward building political communities and then toward those institutionalized
sites that retain a degree of responsiveness due to their dependence upon the people for legitimacy and
authority. As long as international institutions have only a philanthropic relationship with people in the
South, they are unaccountable politically and have no compulsion to respond, and so the nation-state
remains the only political institution in which that compulsion can be found, however attenuated it may be
as a result of states' reliance upon violence and donor support.


Focus on interim gains is independently valuable and culminates in revolutionary
politics seeking complete revolution without particular state-centric goals leads
to inevitable failure
Connolly 13 Professor of Political Science @ JHU
(William, The Fragility of Things, p. 36-42)
A philosophy attending to the acceleration, expansion, irrationalities, interdependencies, and fragilities of
late capitalism suggest that we do not know that confidence, in advance of experimental action, just how
far or fast changes in the systemic character of neoliberal capitalism can be made. The structures often
seem solid and intractable, and indeed such a semblance may turn out to be true. Some may seem solid,
infinitely absorptive, and intractable when they are in fact punctuated by hidden vulnerabilities, soft
spots, uncertainties, and potential lines of flight that become apparent when they are subjected to
experimental action, upheaval, testing, and strain. Indeed no ecology of late capitalism, given the variety
of forces to which it is connected by a thousand pulleys, vibrations, impingements, dependencies, shocks,
and threads, can specify with supreme confidence the solidity or potential flexibility of the structures it
seeks to change. The strength of structural theory, at its best, was in identifying institutional intersections
that hold a system together; its conceit, at its worst, was the claim to know in advance how resistant such
intersections are to potential change. Without adopting the opposite conceit, it seems important to pursue
possible sites of strategic action that might open up room for productive change. Today it seems important
to attend to the relation between the need for structural change and identification of multiple sites of
potential action. You do not know precisely what you are doing when you participate in such a venture.
You combine an experimental temper with the appreciation that living and acting into the future inevitably
contain a shifting quotient of uncertainty. The following tentative judgments and sites of action may
pertinent. 1) Neither neoliberal theory, nor socialist productivism, nor deep ecology, nor social democracy
in its classic form seems sufficient to the contemporary condition. This is so in part because the powers of
market self-regulation are both real and limited in relation to a larger multitude of heterogeneous force
fields beyond the human estate with differential power of self-regulation and metamorphosis. A first task is
to challenge neoliberal ideology through critique and by elaborating and publicizing positive alternatives
that acknowledge the disparate relations between market processes, other cultural systems, and
nonhuman systems. Doing so to render the fragility of things more visible and palpable. Doing so, too, to
set the stage for a series of intercoded shifts in citizen role performances, social movements, and state
action. 2) Those who seek to reshape the ecology of late capitalism might set an interim agenda of radial
reform and then recoil back on the initiatives adopted to see how they work. An interim agenda is the
best thing to focus on because in a world of becoming the more distant future is too cloudy to engage.
We must, for instance, become involved in experimental micro-politics on a variety of fronts, as we
participate in role experimentations, social movements, artistic displays, erotic-political shows, electoral
campaigns, and creative interventions on the new media to help recode the ethos that now occupies
investment practices, consumption desires, family savings, state priorities, church assemblies, university
curricula, and media reporting. It is important to bear in mind how extant ideologies, established role
performances, social movements, and commitments to state action intersect. To shift some of our own
role performances in the zones of travel, church participation, home energy use, investment, and
consumption, for instance, that now implicate us deeply in foreign oil dependence and the huge military
expenditures that secure it, could make a minor difference on its own and also lift some of the burdens of
institutional implication from us to support participation in more adventurous interpretations, political
strategies, demands upon the state, and cross state citizen actions. 3) Today perhaps the initial target
should be on reconstituting established patterns of consumption by a combination of direct citizens
actions in consumption choices, publicity of such actions, the organization of local collectives to modify
consumption practices, and social movements to reconstitute the current state-and market-supported
infrastructure of consumption. By the infrastructure of consumption I mean publicly supported and
subsidized market subsystems such as a national highway system, a system of airports, medical care

through private insurance, agribusiness pouring high sugar, salt, and fat content into foods, corporate
ownership of the public media, the prominence of corporate 403 accounts over retirement pension, and
so forth that enable some modes of consumption in the zones of travel, education, diet, retirement,
medical care, energy use, health, and education and render others much more difficult of expensive to
procure. To change the infrastructure is also to shift the types of work and investment available. Social
movements that work upon the infrastructure and ethos of consumption in tandem can thus make a real
difference directly, encourage more people to heighten their critical perspectives, and thereby open more
people to a more militant politics if and as the next disruptive event emerges. Perhaps a cross-state
citizen goal should be to construct a pluralist assemblage by moving back and forth between experiments
in role performances, the refinement of sensitive modes of perception, revisions in political ideology, and
adjustments in political sensibility, doing so to mobilize enough collective energy to launch a general strike
simultaneously in several countries in the near future. The aim of such an event would be to reverse the
deadly future created by established patterns of climate change by fomenting significant shifts in patterns
of consumption, corporate policies, state law, and the priorities of interstate organizations. Again, the
dilemma of today is that the fragility of things demands shifting and slowing down intrusion: into several
aspects of nature as we speed up shifts in identity, role performance, cultural ethos, market regulation,
and state policy. 4) The existential forces of hubris (expressed above all in those confident drives to
mastery conveyed by military elites, financial economists, financial elites, and CEOs) and of ressentiment
(expressed in some sectors of secularism and evangelicalism) now play roles of importance in the shape
of consumption practices, investment portfolios, worker routines, managerial demands, and the uneven
semen of entitlement that constitute neoliberalism. For that reason activism inside churches, schools,
street life, and the media must become increasingly skilled and sensitive. As we proceed, some of us may
present the themes of a world of becoming to larger audiences, challenging thereby the complementary
notions of a providential world and secular mastery that now infuse too many role performances, market
practices, and state priorities in capitalist life. For existential dispositions do infuse the role priorities of late
capitalism. Today it is both difficult for people to perform the same roles with the same old innocence and
difficult to challenge those performances amid our own implication in them. Drive by evangelists, the
media, neoconservatives, and the neolibreal right to draw a veil of innocence across the priorities of
contemporary life make the situation much worse. 5) The emergence of a neofascist or mafia-type
capitalism slinks as a dangerous possibility on the horizon, partly because of the expansion and
intensification of capital, partly because of the real fragility of things, partly because the identity needs of
many facing these pressures encourage them to cling more intensely to a neoliberal imaginary as its
bankruptcy becomes increasingly apparent, partly because so many in America insist upon retaining the
special world entitlements the country achieved after World War II in a world decreasingly favorable to
them, partly because of the crisis tendencies inherent in neoliberal capitalism, and partly because so
many resist living evidence around and in them that challenges a couple of secular and theistic images of
the cosmos now folded into the institutional life of capitalism. Indeed the danger is that those
constituencies now most disinclined to give close attention to public issues could oscillate between
attraction to the mythic promises of neoliberal automaticity and attraction to a neofascist movement when
the next crisis unfolds. It has happened before. I am not saying that neoliberalism is itself a form of
fascism, but that the failures and meltdowns it periodically promotes could once again foment fascist or
neofascist responses, as happened in several countries after the onset of the Great Depression. 6) The
democratic state, while it certainly cannot alone tame capital or reconstitute the ethos and infrastructure of
consumption, must play a significant role in reconstituting our lived relations to climate, weather, resource
use, ocean currents, bee survival, tectonic instability, glacier flows, species diversity, work, local life,
consumption, and investment, as it also responds favorable to the public pressures we must generate
to forge a new ethos. A new, new left will thus experimentally enact new intersections between role
performance and political activity, outgrow its old disgust with the very idea of the state, and remain alert
to the dangers states can pose. It will do so because, as already suggested, the fragile ecology of late
capital requires state interventions of several sorts. A refusal to participate in the state today cedes too
much hegemony to neoliberal markets, either explicitly or by implication. Drives to fascism, remember,
rose the last time in capitalist states after a total market meltdown. Most of those movements failed. But a
couple became consolidate through a series of resonances (vibrations) back and forth between
industrialists, the state, and vigilante groups, in neighborhoods, clubs, churches, the police, the media,
the pubs. You do not fight the danger of a new kind of neofascism by withdrawing from either micropolitics
or state politics. You do so through a multisited politics designed to infuse a new ethos into the fabric of

everyday life. Changes in ethos can in turn open doors to new possibilities of state and interstate action,
so that an advance in one domain seeds that in the other. And vice versa. A positive dynamic of mutual
amplification might be generated here. Could a series of significant shifts in the routines of state and
global capitalism even press the fractures system to a point where it hovers on the edge of capitalism
itself? We dont know. That is one reason it is important to focus on interim goals. Another is that in a
world of becoming, replete with periodic and surprising shift in the course of events, you cannot project far
beyond an interim period. Another yet is that activism needs to project concrete, interim possibilities to
gain support and propel itself forward. That being said, it does seem unlikely to me, at least, that a
positive interim future includes either socialist productivism or the world projected by proponents of deep
ecology. 7) To advance such an agenda it is also imperative to negotiate new connections between
nontheistic constituencies who care about the future of the Earth and numerous devotees of diverse
religious traditions who fold positive spiritualties into their creedal practices. The new, multifaceted
movement needed today, if it emerges, will take the shape of a vibrant pluralist assemblage acting at a
multiple sites within and across states, rather than either a centered movement with a series of fellow
travelers attached to it or a mere electoral constellation. Electoral victories are important, but that work
best when they touch priorities already embedded in churches, universities, film, music, consumption
practices, media reporting, investment priorities, and the like. A related thing to keep in mind is that the
capitalist modes of acceleration, expansion, and intensification that heighten the fragility of things today
also generate pressures to minorities the world along multiple dimensions at a more rapid pace than
heretofore. A new pluralist constellation will build upon the latter developments as it works to reduce the
former effects. I am sure that the forgoing comments will appear to some as optimistic or utopian. But
optimism and pessimism are both primarily spectatorial views. Neither seems sufficient to the
contemporary condition. Indeed pessimism, if you dwell on it long, easily slides into cynicism, and
cynicism often plays into the hands of a right wing that applies it exclusively to any set of state activities
not designed to protect or coddle the corporate estate. That is one reason that dysfunctional politics
resounds so readily to the advantage of cynics on the right who work to promote it. They want to promote
cynicism with respect to the state and innocence with respect to the market. Pure critique, as already
suggested, does not suffice either. Pure critique too readily carries critics and their followers to the edge
of cynicism. It is also true that the above critique concentrates on neoliberal capitalism, not capitalism
writ large. That is because it seems to me that we need to specify the terms of critique as closely as
possible and think first of all about interim responses. If we lived under, say, Keynesian capitalism, a
somewhat different set of issues would be defined and other strategies identified. Capitalism writ large
while it sets a general context that neoliberalism inflects in specific wayssets too large and generic a
target. It can assume multiple forms, as the difference between Swedish and American capitalism suggest
the times demand a set of interim agendas targeting the hegemonic form of today, pursued with
heightened militancy at several sties. The point today is not to wait for a revolution that overthrows
the whole system. The system, as we shall see further, is replete with too many loose ends, uneven
edges, dicey intersections with nonhuman forces, and uncertain trajectories to


15:23 make such a wholesale project plausible. Besides, things are too urgent and too many
people on the ground are suffering too much now. The need now is to activate the most promising
political strategies to the contemporary condition out of a bad set. On top of assessing probabilities and
predicting them with secret relish or despairactivities I myself pursue during the election seasonwe
must define the urgent needs of the day in relation to a set of interim possibilities worthy of pursuit on
several fronts, even if the apparent political odds are stacked against them. We then test ourselves and
those possibilities by trying to enact this or that aspect of them at diverse sites, turning back to reconsider
their efficacy and side effects as circumstances shift and results accrue. In so doing we may experience
more vibrantly how apparently closed and ossified structures are typically punctuated by jagged edges,
seams, and fractures best pried open with a mix of public contestation of established interpretations,
experimental shifts in multiple role performances, micropolitics in churches, universities, unions, the
media, and corporations, state actions, and large-scale, cross-state citizen actions.


New movements are reforming racially unjust laws in a meaningful manner using
intersectional approaches all of their evidence indicts the legal-equality
reforms of the civil rights era
Spade 13 associate professor of law @ Seattle University
Dean, Intersectional Resistance and Law Reform Signs Vol. 38, No. 4, Summer //
These critical perspectives suggest a very different method for analyzing American law, one that
departs from the questions that lawyers and legal scholars, who are often engaged in single-axis
thinking about systems of subjection, might ask. Those inquiries often identify the realm of equality
law as centered in antidiscrimination and hate crime laws. They often look for places in law where
particular groups are named for exclusion or could be named as protected and assume that achieving
justice means focusing on reforming those laws. The critical scholars and movements I have been
describing instead examine not what the law says about itself but how its operations distribute life
chances. They are suspicious of formal declarations of equality and of the idea that legal
governmental protections are remedies for violence rather than sources of it. They are vigilant about
co-optation, asking whether such declarations have had the material impact promised. Administrative
operations occurring in welfare departments, immigration agencies, the Bureau of Indian Affairs,
bodies overseeing environmental regulations, departments of corrections, child protective services,
and education and taxation systems have been the focus of those who refuse to accept formal legal
equality or facial neutrality as the resolution of their claims. Their interventions have asked how these
systems are experienced from the perspective of marginalized populations rather than from the
perspective of white lawmakers who declare legal systems to be neutral or natural while in reality they
center a white propertied male subject. Narrow interventions that purportedly deliver equality have not
passed the test when measured against the experiences of people living on the losing end of the
distribution of life chances administered by these systems. These critics reject the focus on
declarations of equality that often turn out to be mere window dressing for perpetual violence.
Genealogies of violence In analyzing purportedly neutral systems to reveal their targeted violence,
critics often expose continuities of violence where dominant narratives have declared key historical
breaks. National narratives of US history articulate that prior egregious state violences have been
resolved, often by civil rights law or other legal reforms. The implication is that any existing differences
in living conditions among subpopulations in the United States must be a result of merit or lack thereof.
Critics contest this story, arguing that while the operations of systems of meaning and control have
changed, and while certain technologies of violence have been altered or replaced, the declared
breaks are fictions. For example, reproductive justice activists and others have analyzed the child
welfare systems targeting of Black families as an extension of chattel slavery, a system under which
family ties between enslaved Black people were violently broken and Black motherhood was
constituted as fundamentally different from the valorized white motherhood seen as central to
reproducing the nation (Roberts 1993b). Prison abolitionists have argued that the US criminal
punishment system is an extension of the racial control of slavery (Hartman 1997; Davis 2003). Their
refutation of the purported historical break between slavery and freedom for Black people allows
antiprison scholars to analyze criminal punishment very differently than if they saw the problems of the
system as utterly separate from the foundational violences of chattel slavery. This viewpoint has
fostered recognition that efforts to reform prisons have consistently resulted in the expansion of
imprisonment. Often carried out in the name of making prisons more humane, reform results in more
and more peopleespecially Black people, as well as other people of color and poor people
spending more time in prisons overall. The demand for prison abolition is seen as an extension of the
unfinished project of abolishing slavery, and the racialized-gendered operations of policing and
criminalization are analyzed in relation to their predecessors under slavery. Tracing genealogies of
racialized-gendered control and exploitation allows critics to look at purportedly neutral administrative
governance in ways that foster very different demands than any single-axis analysis would produce.
Such critiques reject the narrative that the US immigration system shed its racism when it abolished

Asian-exclusion laws and racial quotas. Instead, immigration enforcement remains racially targeted, is
justified through the mobilization of racist images, and perpetuates racialized-gendered nation-making
goals: cultivating the life of a white European settler population and maintaining people of color as
maximally exploitable and disposable by casting them as threats to that life. Indigenous scholars and
activists refusal to adopt the narrative of the settler state, which seeks to portray the process of
genocide and displacement as over or complete, and their constant resistance to ongoing land theft,
occupation, attempts at forced assimilation, and erasure all expose the continuity between the
supposed bad old days and today. Rejection of civil rights strategies, which seek recognition from and
protection of US law, is a necessary element of this analysis, since indigenous scholars and activists
have shown that the US government and its legal system are the most significant sources of violence
and harm against indigenous people, not forces of protection (Smith 2005; Sharma and Wright 2008
9). These critical inquiries and demands, and their rejection of legal-equality strategies, bring up
significant questions about the US nation-state and the role of legal reform in remedying the violences
of white supremacy, settler colonialism, heteropatriarchy, and ableism. The methodologies used by the
critical traditions I have cited lead to a focus on the targeted violences of purportedly neutral
administrative systems and an analysis of how those violences are contiguous with the racializedgendered property relations that are foundational to the United States (Harris 1996). By invoking the
term population control, these critical traditions allow us to recognize that the conditions they resist
stem from a variety of administrative practices and governing logics that are often mistakenly analyzed
separately when single-axis thinking dominates. When those logics and practices are viewed through
the genealogies of foundational violences, formal legal change that is primarily symbolic, removing
only explicit exclusions or targeting individuals acting with bad intentions, appears severely limited,
and deeper questions and demands about fundamental structures of governance emerge. Critical
race studies scholarship has described the United States as a racial project (Omi and Winant 1986).
The creation of the nation was accomplished through racialization, and racial categories and the
United States are mutually constitutive (Harris 1996; Gmez 2007; Willse 2011). The governing
capacity of the United States was established through racializing legal mechanisms, including the legal
enforcement of a system of chattel slavery; the theft of land and the imposition of legal regimes that
established the possibility of ownership for settlers while targeting indigenous people for death and
forced assimilation; the establishment of an immigration enforcement system that used racial
categories to determine who could become part of the nation; and the establishment of a broad range
of social welfare programs that aimed to cultivate white life and distribute education, land, home
ownership, and health care in racially targeted ways.9 While immigration, property, social welfare,
education, and other programs are no longer allowed to include codified, explicit racial exclusions,
their operations are still racialized and racializing.10 Women-of-color feminism, queer-of-color critique,
and other critical work on gender and sexuality has helped us understand that the racialization
processes that formed the United States and continue to operate under new guises are also always
processes that produce, manage, and deploy gender categories and sexuality and family norms.11
The nation-state form itself is produced by the project of gendered-racialized population management.
Michel Foucault described this way of thinking about governance by suggesting that what he called
state racism (2003, 61) is inherent to the project of cultivating the life of the national population.
Foucault argued that the most prevalent form of power operating today is power that takes the
population as its target, that endeavors, through a variety of means, to cultivate the life of the
population and to identify and eliminate threats to and drains on that population. These threats and
drains are the subpopulations that must be banished, killed, caged, or abandoned in order to promote
the life of the national population (Foucault 2003; Valverde 2007). Perhaps this framework of saving or
promoting the life of the national population through the exploitation or death of others is particularly
visible in the example of racialized-gendered medical experimentation. Whether we look at the work of
the Nazi doctors, the Tuskegee experiment, the intentional spread of infectious diseases to indigenous
populations in North America, the widespread practices of medical experimentation on US prisoners,
or the long history of forced sterilization of people of color and people with disabilities in the United
States, we see the logic that aims to protect and improve the lives of some through exploiting,
controlling, or extinguishing the lives of others (Durazo Rojas 2006). This kind of power is operating
when state capacities are mobilized to ensure that borders are closed, prisons are locked down,
identity documents are checked, and countless other security operations are enforced. In the United
States, recent decades have seen internal enemies cast as racialized-gendered figuresdrug dealers,

criminals, terrorists, illegals, gang members, and welfare queens. The white, propertied settler
population must be protected from whatever racialized others are being targeted at the time, and
images related to racial classifications, to ideas of foreignness, and to body, ability, gender, and
sexuality norms are mobilized to produce these targets. Considering subjection intersectionally,
examining purportedly neutral administrative systems to see their targeted violences, and tracing
genealogies of racialized population control forces critical scholars and activists dedicated to
transforming violent conditions to think broadly about the US legal system and the nation-state form.
What intersectional politics demands Social movements using critical intersectional tools are
making demands that are often difficult for legal scholars to comprehend because of the ways that
they throw US law and the nation-state form into crisis. Because they recognize the fact that legal
equality contains and neutralizes resistance and perpetuates intersectional violence and because they
identify purportedly neutral administrative systems as key vectors of that violence, critical scholars and
activists are making demands that include ending immigration enforcement and abolishing policing
and prisons. These demands suggest that the technologies of gendered racialization that form the
nation cannot be reformed into fair and neutral systems. These systems are technologies of racializedgendered population control that cannot operate otherwisethey are built to extinguish perceived
threats and drains in order to protect and enhance the livelihood of the national population. These
kinds of demands and the analysis they represent produce a different relation to law reform
strategies than the national narrative about law reform suggests, and different than what is often
assumed by legal scholars interested in the field of equality law. Because legal equality victories
are being exposed as primarily symbolic declarations that stabilize the status quo of violence,
declarations from courts or legislatures become undesirable goals. Instead, law reform, in this view,
might be used as a tactic of transformation focused on interventions that materially reduce
violence or maldistribution without inadvertently expanding harmful systems in the name of
reform. One recent example is the campaign against gang injunctions in Oakland, California. A broad
coalitioncomprising organizations focused on police violence, economic justice, imprisonment, youth
development, immigration, gentrification, and violence against queer and trans peoplesucceeded in
recent years in bringing significant attention to the efforts of John Russo, Oaklands city attorney, to
introduce gang injunctions (Critical Resistance 2011). The organizations in this coalition are
prioritizing anticriminalization work that might usually be cast as irrelevant or marginal to
organizations focused on the single axis of womens or LGBT equality. The campaign has a law reform
target in that it seeks to prevent the enactment of certain law enforcement mechanisms that are
harmful to vulnerable communities. However, it is not a legal-equality campaign.


15:24 Rather than aiming to change a law or policy that explicitly excludes a category of
people, it aims to expose the fact that a facially neutral policy is administered in a racially
targeted manner (Davis 2011; Stop the Injunctions 2011). Furthermore, the coalition frames its
campaign within a larger set of demands not limited to what can be won within the current structure
of American law but focused on population-level conditions of maldistribution. The demands of the
coalition include stopping all gang injunctions and police violence; putting resources toward reentry
support and services for people returning from prison, including fully funded and immediate access to
identity documents, housing, job training, drug and alcohol treatment, and education; banning
employers from asking about prior convictions on job applications; ending curfews for people on parole
and probation; repealing Californias three-strikes law; reallocating funds from prison construction to
education; ending all collaborations between Oaklands government and Immigration and Customs
Enforcement (ICE); providing affordable and low-income housing; making Oaklands Planning
Commission accountable regarding environmental impacts of development; ending gentrification; and
increasing the accountability of Oaklands city government while augmenting decision-making power
for Oakland residents (Stop the Injunctions 2011). These demands evince an analysis of conditions
facing vulnerable communities in Oakland (and beyond) that cannot be resolved solely through legal
reform since they include the significant harm inflicted when administrative bodies like ICE and the
Planning Commission implement violent programs under the guise of neutral rationales. These
demands also demonstrate an intersectional analysis of harm and refuse logics of deservingness that
have pushed many social movements to distance themselves from criminalized populations. Instead,
people caught up in criminal and immigration systems are portrayed as those in need of resources and

support, and the national fervor for law and order that has gripped the country for decades, emptying
public coffers and expanding imprisonment, is criticized. Another example of intersectional
activism utilizing law reform without falling into the traps of legal equality is activism against
the immigration enforcement program Secure Communities. Secure Communities is a federal
program in which participating jurisdictions submit the fingerprints of arrestees to federal databases for
an immigration check. As of October 2010, 686 jurisdictions in thirty-three states were participating.12
Diverse coalitions of activists and organizations around the United States launched organizing
campaigns to push their jurisdictions to refuse to participate. Organizations focused on domestic
violence, trans and queer issues, racial and economic justice, and police accountability, along with
many others, have joined this effort and committed resources to stopping the devolution of criminal
and immigration enforcement. Their advocacy has rejected deservingness narratives that push the
conversation toward reform for good, noncriminal immigrants. These advocates have won significant
victories, convincing certain jurisdictions to refuse to participate and increasing understanding of the
intersecting violences of criminal punishment and immigration enforcement.13 This work also avoids
the danger of expanding and legitimizing harmful systems that other legal reform work can
present. It is focused on reducing, dismantling, and preventing the expansion of harmful systems.14 I
offer these examples not because they are perfectcertainly a significant range of tactics and
strategies are part of each of these campaigns, and, with detailed analysis, we might find instances of
co-optation, deservingness divides, and other dangers of legal reform work occurring even as some
are avoided and rejected. However, these examples are indicative of resistance to limitations of
legal equality or rights strategies. These demands exceed what the law recognizes as viable
claims. These campaigns suggest that those who argue that a politics based on intersectional
analysis is too broad, idealistic, complex, or impossibleor that it eliminates effective immediate
avenues for resistanceare mistaken. Critical political engagements are resisting the pitfalls of
rights discourse and seeking to build broad-based resistance formations made up of
constituencies that come from a variety of vulnerable subpopulations but find common cause
in concerns about criminalization, immigration, poverty, colonialism, militarism, and other
urgent conditions. Their targets are administrative systems and law enforcement mechanisms
that are nodes of distribution for racialized-gendered harm and violence, and their tactics seek
material change in the lives of vulnerable populations rather than recognition and formal
inclusion. Their organizing methods mobilize directly affected communities and value horizontal
structures, leadership development, mutual aid, democratic participation, and community solutions
rather than top-down, elite-imposed approaches to political transformation. These analytical and
practical methods owe a great deal to women-of-color feminist formations that have innovated and
continue to lead inquiry and experimentation into transformative social justice theory and practice.15


Top down change in policymaking is key the lack of strategy in humanitarian
debates legitimizes arbitrary intervention it also proves they cant turn the aff
because intervention is completely arbitrary
Chandler, Professor of International Relations at the Department of Politics and International Relations,
University of Westminster, 07
(David, The securitydevelopment nexus and the rise of anti-foreign policy, Journal of International
Relations and Development, 2007, 10, pg. 362386)
Conclusion: The Rise of Anti-Foreign Policy
Anti-foreign policy is driven by a self-referential political agenda rather than foreign policy concerns.
This is the opposite of traditional foreign policy in that the foreign object of policy is merely a cipher for a
statement of political purpose. Western states and international institutions are in a position of
international power and authority, yet this power increasingly seems bereft of political purpose. It is this
lack of purpose that, as discussed above, incapacitates the policy-making process. Anti-foreign
policy issues are usually flagged up by utopian rhetorical claims of moral purpose that are rarely
backed by resources or strategic policy-making. The exposure of the rhetorical nature of this political
grandstanding usually takes the form of the critique of the lack of political will without a critique of the
gesture politics that initiated the policy discussion (for an exception, see the critique made in Cunliffe
Rather than challenging the ad hoc policy approaches, picked up in the policy reports arguing for a
coherent, comprehensive, holistic approach to policy-making, the securitydevelopment nexus
institutionalizes the arbitrary and non-strategic policy-making process. In viewing the problems of
nonWestern states from the micro-perspective of individuals and the solutions as ones of bureaucratic,
technical coordination of international donors and actors, no broader policy framework can emerge. There
is no way of linking individual projects to a broader strategy, or of measuring the success or failure of
these policy initiatives. In the framework forwarded here, of anti-foreign policy, the securitydevelopment
nexus could be seen as a nexus between increased declaratory ambitions with regard to peace, security
and development in non-Western states, such as those in Africa, and the desire to evade policy-making
responsibility on the ground.
Foreign policy, the projection of power externally, often tells us more about the foreign policy actor than any external object (see e.g.
the path-breaking Foucauldian analysis forwarded in Campbell 1998).It is not only power that is projected but a certain framework of
ideas and values and political purpose. To this extent, social constructivist theorists in international relations are right to argue that
the interests of any actor cannot be separated from their political identities (e.g. Wendt 1992). Social constructivism has become
increasingly dominant in the security studies literature because it appears to capture the fluidity of policy-making and the seemingly
free-floating nature of the concept of security since the end of the Cold War (e.g Buzan et al.1997; see also Bigo 2002; Huysmans
2002, 2004).The meaning of security has been hollowed out as it increasingly stands in for policy-making without a strategic
context. As French theorist Zaki Ladi has noted, the lack of clear policy frameworks, since the beginning

of the 1990s, has made reactive and ad hoc policy-making the norm (Ladi 1998; see also Coker
At the international level, there seems to be no clear framework of international ordering to replace
that of the geo-political division that ended in 1989.Despi te the USs dominance in military terms,
America has not been able to shape a new order comparable to that of the post-World War Two
institutional order based on the UN and the Bretton Woods institutions (Reus-Smit 2004: 2; see also
Bacevich 2002; Kupchan 2002). Rather than setting their own strategic and forward-looking policy
agendas, leading Western states and international institutions appear to have settled for a security
discourse that emphasizes the powerlessness of policy-makers in the face of globalization or the
threats from global warming, acts of terror or failing states.
It would be no exaggeration to say that governmental approaches to the international sphere have never
been less future-orientated than today. It seems that the end of superpower competition has left the
remaining power exhausted, without a mission or a sense of purpose. There is little doubt that the
absence of great power conflict appears to have removed a framework of meaning in which the
international sphere was highly politicized. Nial l Ferguson makes the point that the lack of any

international project poses the risk that, rather than the choice being between realist views of unipolarity
or multipolarity, there is a real risk of a generalized impotence or, if you like, apolarity (Ferguson
2004: 296).When those with power lack a clear framework through which to exercise it, then as Ladi
Power understood in its widest sense is conceived and experienced less and less as a process of
taking over responsibilities, and more as a game of avoidancey Social actors avoid taking on their own
responsibilities or some responsibilities because, in the absence of a framework of meaning,
responsibilities are measured only in cost terms (Ladi 1998: 13). Without a cause, a sense of
purpose or political meaning, it is difficult to engage in the making of policy. Policy cannot be
formulated without a future-orientated vision of society, to which the government is committed. As Paul
Williams (2006) argues: In short, policy puts an emphasis on discerning what a desirable world
would look like and how it may be brought about through conscious action. This is because policymaking entails taking responsibility for making choices dependent upon having a conviction in a
political goal. It is only a strong conviction in the political ends of a policy that enables governments and
societies to justify and legitimize the inevitable costs (whether in terms of money, soldiers/civilian lives or
other resources) of achieving these policy ends.


Insistence on a neat division between, and retreat from, Western institutional
knowledge results in a form of violent nationalism
Brewster Fitz, Oklahoma State University, 2007, American Indian Literary Nationalism, American Indian
Culture and Research Journal 31 no3
Implicit in Weaver's analogical argument, in which he likens Indian boarding school students to contemporary Indian students in
graduate programs in literature and cultural studies, is the assumption that most members of American Indian communities read
criticism and literature. However unlikely this may be, there is another way to interpret and to use this analogical intertwining of
religion, language, literature, and theory as a rhetorical tool to persuade one's readers. It can be argued that speakers of
common languages, whether indigenous American languages or English, should go to the university in order to
study not only the languages of other important cultures (for example, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Arabic,
Chinese, Japanese) but also the figurative "languages" of other professional and academic disciplines.
Whether these are the technical languages of sciences like geology or medicine, the abstract language of mathematics,
the traditional language of law, with its expressions in Latin and antiquated syntax, or the ever-evolving languages of
semiotics, linguistics, or deconstructive theory, with its untranslatable puns and neologisms in French, these technical idioms are not
the equivalent of the language spoken around the kitchen table by the "Native community." Perhaps the most important professional
issue raised in the book is whether non-Native critics "can or should do Native American studies" (10). Weaver points out that nonNative critics, like Robert Dale Parker, in a critical remark on Red on Red, are unable to quote a single passage in which Womack
explicitly states that non-Natives are unwelcome in Native American studies. Explaining that Parker is reacting to what he labels
Womack's "implication" that non-Natives are not welcome, Weaver brings up the thorny interpretive question of the relation between
the writer's or poet's intended meaning and what is understood by the reader and critic (10). This question has long been
problematic. It is central to any theory of reading. I cannot say whether or not Weaver has read Wimsatt and Beardsley's "The
Intentional Fallacy" (1946), in which these two non-Natives, who once ruled the empire of American New Criticism, set themselves
up against traditional literary historians and philologists from all over the world, but he must know that what he, as a prosecuting
attorney, can lead the members of the jury to infer is as important as what he can lead the accused to confess. He inveighs against
implication at the same time that he uses it. According to Weaver, what Parker calls the implication in Womack's text is not
Womack's intended meaning but is "actually Parker's own highly charged inference" (10; italics mine). In using these words, Weaver
implies not only that Parker is mistakenly reading into Womack's words something that Womack did not intend but also that he is
making an emotional rather than a rational appeal to his readers . Weaver then provides his own reading, namely
that Womack is "simply saying that in reading literature one should privilege internal cultural readings " (10).

Needless to say, what it means to "privilege internal cultural readings" can be interpreted in many ways.
Weaver declares he is going to be "explicit and I hope (for the last time) coruscatingly clear" in dealing with the
issue of the participation of non-Native scholars in Native American Studies (11). Nevertheless, he uses highly suggestive
metaphorical language in order to separate the needed and wanted non-Native critics from the unneeded and unwanted nonNative theorists: "We want non-Natives to read, engage, and study Native literature. The survival of Native authors, if not Native
people in general, depends on it. But we do not need literary colonizers" (11; second italics mine). By metaphorically designating the
unneeded and unwanted literary theorists as "literary colonizers," Weaver opens this allegedly "coruscatingly clear" statement to
readers' inferences about what constitutes literary colonialism. Is it possible for a non-Native scholar and critic to put
forward ideas and interpretations based on theoretical understandings of oral and written language that differ from those
of Weaver, Womack, and Warrior, without opening herself to the charges of being a literary colonizer? Owing to their
rhetoric, in which religion, politics, law, literature, and criticism are inseparably interwoven, it becomes difficult not to liken
their own nationalist discourse to the very ethnocentric colonial discourse they see as misguided .
Weaver, who seemingly without irony declares that "Native Americans need the experience of making our own mistakes in literary
criticism," who implies that his own critical discourse might be faulty by explicitly stating that "[e]ven a faulty criticism is more
interesting than a 'correct' one directed by a literary overseer," and who explicitly states that making mistakes is "what sovereignty
and self-determination are all about," appears knowingly to leave himself and his coauthors open to the charge that their
understanding not only of high theory but also of their own discourse may be faulty owing to their own
willingly admitted ethnocentrism (37). Craig Womack ends his chapter "The Integrity of American Indian Claims (Or,
How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love My Hybridity)" in which he, among many things, attacks Elvira Pulitano with the explicit
mention of this initial ironic nod to Dr. Strangelove and a humorous gloss of the final scene of that film: "One of Kubrick's most
enduring images is Slim Pickens straddling the bomb like a bull rider just before the chute is thrown open, then his trip down, falling
from the hatch of a B-52 and waving his cowboy hat as he plummets through the clouds. Embracing my hybridity is about as sexy
as wrapping my legs around an H-bomb. While you might get a big tingle during the initial descent, it's the impact that will kill you"
(174). Whether Womack wraps his legs around Elvira Pulitano's book and rides it to the ground, or picks it up and throws it back into
the group of scholars from whom she has metaphorically tossed it, is left to our interpretation. Nevertheless, everyone at a rodeo
knows who the best bull riders are, even if they do wear cowboy hats. Before reading the three central chapters in this book, one
should already have read, and still be familiar with, Simon Ortiz's essay, "Towards a National Indian Literature: Cultural Authenticity

in Nationalism," which first appeared in 1981 and is included as an appendix. The best place to start reading after Ortiz's essay and
his foreword to this book, as well as the introduction, is probably chapter 3, Robert Warrior's "Native Critics in the World: Edward
Said and Nationalism." Warrior starts his chapter in the autobiographical narrative mode, telling how, during his graduate studies at
Union Theological Seminary, before his return to Pawhuska to work on his doctoral dissertation, he took two seminars in literary
theory across the street at Columbia University. There he encountered Edward Said, the only critic and theorist, non-Indian or
Indian, whom he appears to consider worthy of being an intellectual and political role model. He ends his chapter with the story of
Said's last painful decade as a theoretical scholar, passionate advocate for the nationalist cause of Palestine, and victim of
leukemia. In between he sketches how he and other American Indian theorists can practice a theoretical secularism, similar to the
one advocated by Said, and at the same time adhere to a tribal nationalism-tradition, which is informed by religious beliefs of various
sorts: This is a complex issue, and Warrior probably would be the first to point out that he and his coauthors are far from having had
the last word. Whether Said's secularism, in effect, can operate as a belief system without having the same epistemological,
ontological, and ethnic grounding of religious belief systems is a tough question. A feminist reader of this book might see Lisa
Brooks to be the token female. Invited to the gathering around the kitchen table after the ceremony, Brooks cooks and serves the
literary fry bread. An Ivy League academic who earned her PhD at Cornell and is an assistant professor of history and literature and
of folklore and mythology at Harvard,. Brooks has genetic and cultural roots that reach back to Missiquoi, "an Abenaki village on the
northeast shore of Bitabagwa, or Lake Champlain, that has been continually occupied by Abenaki families for over twelve thousand
years," and to Poland, where her mother survived birth in a Nazi labor camp (246). Seemingly the perfect incarnation of the mixedblood hybridism against which the book inveighs, Brooks favors instead the concepts of self-contained, total indigenous
culture and nationalist literary sovereignty. She rejects poststructuralist thought. Probably alluding to the crimes against
humanity committed under German Nazionalsozialismus and to the murderous Anglo-American nationalist expansion under
manifest destiny, she "admit[s] that talk of nationalism makes [her] wary" (244). Implicit in her essay, however, and in the other
essays in this book, is the argument that not all nationalisms are the same and that not all nationalisms give
birth to abominable crimes against humanity. In other words, just because indigenous tribes claim to be close to the land,
just because some indigenous writers refer to concepts like blood memory, one cannot automatically infer that the literary
nationalism espoused by the coauthors of this book is informed by a troubling ideology like that of Blut und
Boden, which is the German expression for the racist, essentialist, and warlike National Socialist (Nazi)

ideology that led to so much bloodshed during World War II. Nevertheless, there are disturbing signs that
these five nationalist critics have not understood that the linguistic, literary, and cultural theory that informs
their writings is quite similar to that which informs the thought of conservative literary and historical
scholars who not only reject high theory but also reject cultural studies of all sorts.


Political decisions about suffering are inevitable utopian politics ignore our
obligation to better conditions when given the chance they make the
unattainable the enemy of everything else
Darling 09 Becoming bare life: asylum, hospitality, and the politics of encampment Jonathan Darling
School of Geography and Geosciences, University of St Andrews Environment and Planning D: Society
and Space 2009, volume 27, pages 649 ^ 665
However, if Agamben's account of biopolitics reduces power to the power of the sovereign, it also
presents the decision as the central element of such power, and, as such, we might look to the reading of
the decision offered through Derrida, of a decision held in relation to a messianic promise of justice and
unconditional hospitality, as presenting an alternative means of approaching the work of the Gateway
Programme. Schemes such as the Gateway Programme are undoubtedly flawed; they do draw division
and force hard choices to be made, yet, in a sense, this is part of what makes them political. The
fundamental need to decide, to make choices, is one which politics is mired in as Derrida (2002)
has suggested. If we reject all such schemes as simply recreating the divisions of biopower, of simply
reclassifying those who are deemed to be `bare life', then we risk not allowing space for any
future, possible, and potentially alternative political formations to emerge and be supported. What
we are left with is a logic of unconditional hospitality itself, but one which flatly rejects a recourse to
decision, distinction, and the exception, one which shuts the door on a truly political response. Thus,
I would advocate that what is demanded in the present and what Gateway gestures towards, albeit
problematically is a politics of decision, of the best possible conditions, which takes as its starting point a
reference to an ethos of the unconditional. In a language of hospitality, the response of the Gateway
Programme might be viewed as an attempt, albeit failingly at times, to ``render [hospitable engagement]
as effective as possible, to invent the best arrangements... the most just legislation'' (Derrida, 2005,
page 6). For Derrida, hospitality will never evade its conditional nature, yet this is no reason to stop
efforts to become hospitable; rather, Derrida takes the relationship which such impossibility recalls as a
driving force behind attempts to become hospitable. Thus, ``it is necessary to deduce a politics and a
law from ethics'' (1999, page 115). What such a deduction gestures towards is a means to ``determine
the `better' or the `less bad''' (Keating, 2004, paragraph 36); thus, those `best arrangements' which
Derrida (2005) envisions are by necessity produced precisely by this relation to an unconditional account
of hospitality. As Derrida (2000b, page 79) argues, ``conditional laws of hospitality would cease to be laws
of hospitality if they were not guided, given inspiration, given aspiration, required, even by the law of
unconditional hospitality.'' As such, the decisions of the Gateway Programme, decisions of and about
hospitality, should not be dismissed out of hand as exclusionary gestures, but, rather, should be
seen for what they are, limited, conditional, and problematic moments of sovereign distinction. However,
as such, these decisions can be approached politically from the kind of stance Derrida advocates, one in
which that messianic promise of an unconditional hospitality interrogates the finite and contestable
decisions of the present. The Gateway Programme is imperfect, divisive, and forces distinctions, yet
these are the inevitable consequences of attempting to negotiate the hiatus between hospitality as
an ethical injunction and hospitality as a practical, political response. What I have attempted to
suggest through the example of the Gateway Protection Programme, then, is how the different readings
of the decision offered by Agamben and Derrida in response to contemporary biopolitics lead us to
differing political modes of response. The Gateway Programme straddles this divide; it presents at once a
biopolitical gesture of sovereign decision making which upholds the current asylum system of the UK, and
yet also offers a sense of conditional and limited hospitality to those accepted as Gateway refugees. In
approaching the decisions of the Gateway Programme, however, I would argue that only Derrida's
account of a politics of the need to decide, here and now, offers a viable means of responding to
such distinction. Derrida (2003, page 133) argues that, in responding to the other, we must ``be dutiful
beyond duty, we must go beyond the law, tolerance, conditional hospitality, economy, and so on. But to go
beyond does not mean to discredit that which we exceed.'' Thus, we must challenge the divisions of such

resettlement schemes; we must challenge the decisions of biopower in the name of a messianic sense of
justice forever `to come' and always hope to go beyond such schemes and political programmes alone.
However, just as crucially, this does not mean that we lose sight of `that which we exceed', and, as such,
we should not forget that we do have to make decisions, and that the Gateway Programme, despite
its many failings, has aided the lives of many refugees. As such, we might begin to consider a
response to the biopolitics of asylum through what Critchley (2007) terms an `interstitial distance' from the
state, a politics of contestation and challenge which works ``within, across, above, beneath, and within the

Marked 15:27

territory of
the democratic state, not in the vain hope of achieving some
sort of `society without the state', but rather as providing constant critical pressure upon the state, a
pressure of emancipatory intent aiming at its infinite amelioration, the endless betterment of actually
existing democracy'' (2000, page 464).

Blackness is not the experience of social death the fact that they can critique
humanism proves its contingent
Tuch, Professor and Chair. Department of Sociology. George Washington University, 07
(Steven A. and Yoku Shaw-Taylor, The Other African Americans: Contemporary African and Caribbean
Immigrants in the United States, Pg. 74-77)
Accompanying the expansion of countries whose consolidation became known as Europe were emerging
differences in the order of knowledge through which human beings were classified. As scholars such as
V. Y. Mudimbe (1988), Oyeronke Oyewiimf (1997). and Cornel West (2002) have shown, drawing upon
the resources of archaeological and genealogical poststructuralism, the emergence of systematic forms of
inquiry premised upon white supremacy as the basis of human normality resulted in notions of deviation
that structured black people in a derivative relationship with whites. In other words, a link between
the formation of knowledge and processes of inquiry, on the one hand, and mechanisms of power and the
effecting of new and differentiating forms of life/identities, on the other, emerged with their correlative
subjectivities. From aesthetic criteria for human beauty to measurements of intelligence, blacks became
the comparison model of deviation instead of ever serving as the standard. Even worse, the very
production of their classificationas blacks at the least, "niggers" at worstwas a function of a logic that
was not their own; blacks are, in other words, as Frantz Fanon (1967) declared, white constructions.
The account suffers, however, in that it simply declares the conditions for the emergence of certain forms
of phenomena; it does not articulate the lived reality of such phenomena, especially in terms of the
consciousness that experiences them. For even such a consciousness would be subjected to
discursive determinations of its emergence; it would, in other words, be accepted if, and only if, theorized
from its outside, that is, in terms of what constitutes it as such. So, meaning, form, definition, and
determination cannot make sense inside o/things. Given the conceptual work brought to bear in making
things meaningful, there is always an outside, public, hence social, dimension to the constitution of
meaning. We should thus study not the essence of the thing but how such an essence is formed. A
problem is raised, however, by a thing that is capable of raising such questions, a thing that can raise
the question of its own meaning and subjectivity. In effect, it subjects itself, or is able to raise the
problem of its existence to itself. This means that it faces a paradox: in the face of the rejection of an
inner logic of the self, it poses the question of itself as an external matter from inside of itself This rather
complex development amounts to saying that the thing in question is not fully a thing. It is a human
The human being poses a challenge to mechanisms of discursive closure. This means that there is
always a world of relations of subjectivities and intersubjectivities, of a shared experience of meanings
that are both given and being made. This dialectical relationship of subjection and intersubjectivity is a
manifestation of what is often called agency. That human beings are aware of, or have to interpret and
even apprehend, their situations means that the archaeological and genealogical accounts of the
constitution of raciaiized forms of life tell only a part of the story. Missing, as well, are the varieties of
ways subjects of racism live in their historical and everyday social situations. That they live a constant
struggle for the assertion of their humanity means that social lines are constantly challenged, expanded,
and retracted, and in their course, a more dialectical story unfolds.

The DuBoisian concept of double consciousness is a case in point. In one instance, it is simply an effect
of the systemblacks seeing themselves as seen by the dominating perspectives and resources of
meaning in an antiblack racist society. On the other hand, as Paget Henry (2005) points out, there is
potentiated double consciousness, where there is realization of the false, universalistic claims of the
system of oppression, where blacks realize that the reality of injustice posed as justice in a racist system
hides the racism as racism by (as DuBois [1898, 1903) also observed) making black people into problems
instead of engaging black people as people facing problems. The latter expectation requires an admission
of a social relationship between blacks and nonblacks, in short, the reality of intersubjective or shared
participation in the constitution of meaning in the world.
That black people have posed much difficulty for the modern world is a sign of a healthy consciousness. It
means a refusal to submit to attempts of human erasure. It is not that all black individuals subscribe
to such resistance. It is simply sufficient that enough resistance has existed from the start of racialized
slavery in the sixteenth century to make the anthropological question of what it is to be a human being a
constantly unfolding discourse and material praxis of the modern age. For black people, the concrete
formulation is the reduction of blacks to forms of inert labor, as labor without a point of view, as property.
Even for many freed blacks, the institutional imposition of labor with blackness meant a constant struggle
for the assertion of claimed freedom in a world that had no room for blacks to have leisure time; to be
black and not laboring amounted to an illicit laziness. But even more, the plethora of lines drawn against
human assertion meant a constant strug-gle against illegitimate being. Any category of social life
becomes stained with indiscretion in black form; how does one "live" when one lacks a right to exist?

Protests get crushed need to tamper security dynamics
David Chandler 9, IR prof at the University of Westminster, Critiquing Liberal Cosmopolitanism? The
Limits of the Biopolitical Approach, International Political Sociology (2009) 3, 5370
Here, the universalism of liberal cosmopolitan theorists is stood on its head to argue that it is the
universalizing interests of power, understood in vague terms of biopolitical, neoliberal, global governance,
rather than the genuinely cosmopolitan ethics of empowerment, which drives the discursive practices of
regimes of regulation and intervention in the international sphere. As the 1990s liberal discourse has been
challenged by the 2000s poststructuralist discourse, we seem to be caught up in a contestation over
which academics have the most progressive or radical understandings: of hierarchies of poweras a
product of statist exercises of national self-interest or as a product of new global governmentalities; and
of post-territorial political communityas a response and opposition to these hierarchies, either in the
form of global civil society or multitude.
However, it is not clear whether the contestationin terms of the ontological framings of the relations and
dynamics of power or of alternative political subjects of post-territorial political communityreects much
more than the starting positions of the critical academic theorists concerned. It seems that the radical
differences between those who espouse and those who critique global liberal ontologiesand thereby
read post-territorial community in liberal or poststructuralist framingsare derived less from empirical
investigations than from their own normative aspirations. For cosmopolitan theorists, their normative
aspirations for a more ethical and engaged foreign policy agenda were given added legitimacy through
linking their demands with those of activist NGOs and assertions of global civil societys immanent
existence. As Kaldor (1999:195) asserts, the concept of global or transnational civil society is used on the
one hand as an analytical device, but on the other hand, it is also used to express a political project.
Similarly, for poststructuralist critics, the struggle against empire is alleged to be more than mere
philosophical idealism precisely because it is founded upon the immanent existence of the multitude.
Just as with the concept of global civil society, Hardt and Negris (2006:221) multitude is partly framed as
an abstract heuristic device. But more importantly it is also a normative project: The multitude needs a
political project to bring it into existence (2006:212). As they state: The proletariat is not what it used to
be (2001:53). Their task, therefore, is to discover a new form of global agency. They describe this
mixture of academic investigation and normative aspiration as illustrating that multitude has a strange
double temporality: always-already and not-yet (2006:222). It appears that the new post-territorial
political communities, held to be coming into existence, conate empirical and normative aspirations in
the critique of the perceived hierarchies of power: either being seen as constituted against the narrow
state-interests dominating international politics or against the biopolitics of global empire.
At the level of discursive analysis (as we shall see) the choice between these two approaches can easily
appear to be a purely subjective one. Neither one appears to satisfactorily ground the existence of a new
emerging universal subject capable of constituting post-territorial political communityas the agent of
cosmopolitical regimes or of post-cosmopolitical resistance to these regimes. In both, the subjectwhich
is alleged to demonstrate both the lack and the presence of post-territorial political communityis
grounded in a way that confuses normative political critique with empirical analysis. Both approaches
suggest that traditional territorial political communities have been fundamentally undermined by the
changing nature of social relationsby globalization or by biopolitical production processes. These
changing social relations are held to have undermined territorial political community through the
deconstruction of the unitary assumptions involved in modern liberal democratic political theory. However,
they have been much less successful in demonstrating that new post-territorial forms of political
community have been constructed in their stead.
What is clear is that, in the name of post-territorial political community, liberal and radical critics have
sought to represent the crisis of legitimacy of representative political bodies as a product of political
contestation emerging from post-territorial actors. In these frameworks of understanding global politics,
the shift toward post-territorial community is seen as indicative of new lines of political struggle that have
replaced those of the territorialized framework of Left and Right. For liberal and critical theorists, this is the

struggle for cosmopolitan and human rights and for emancipation against the sovereign power of states.
For poststructuralist theorists, this is seen as the struggle for autonomy and difference against the
universalizing war waged over ways of life itself by neoliberal biopolitical governance (Reid 2006).
However, these struggles remain immanent ones, in which global political social forces of progress are
intimated but are yet to fully develop. There is a problem of the social agency, the collective political
subject, which can give content to the theorizing of global struggle articulated by academic theorists. It
seems that neither liberal nor poststructuralist theorists are able to envisage the possibility that we could
live in a world where politics appears to have become deterritorialized, not as a result of the expanded
nature of collective political engagement, but precisely because of the absence of political struggle (see
further Chandler 2009).

Liberatory violence against antiblackness is political masochism that relies on

incorrect assumptions of political subjectivity, causes massive anxiety, and is a
terrible basis for ethics
B.K. Jha, Reader in Political Science Magadh University, Bodh Gaya, 19 88, Fanons Theory of
Violence: A Critique, The Indian Journal of Political Science, Vol. 49, No. 3, July - September, 1988
To begin with, though Fanon gives much importance to violence, he does not define it in clear cut
terms. He uses it in a sense that embodies the connotations we associate with injury, coerction, force,
power, and the like.17 In fact, Fanon's violence, used to explain everything, explains nothing. The
loose usage of such a critical term weakens its analytical utility.
Again, Fanon is also mistaken in regarding violence as a cause of colonial alienation. He does not
say in what precise manner violence causes the alienation of the native. We know, for instance, that in
the colonized society like Algeria the violence of the colonizer was not the only form of violence and that
the colonized was also violent. How can we be sure that a particular alienation expressed by a
particular person is not the result of native's own violence, different from the violence of the colonial
Moreover, Fanon's notion of man re-creating himself through violence may be questioned on three
main grounds. In the first place, the practice of violence may change the man, but the most probable
change would be a more violent man. Fanon overlooks the fact that too much preoccupation with
violence orients man's mind towards violence even when the real object of violence disappears after
the victory of revolution. Consequently, the revolutionary violence may degenerate into "political
masochism".1' The shortcomings of any celebration of violence are not only limited to the level of
individual psychosis, they may pose problems to the social and political system. It is not improbable
that military and terroristic styles of government generated in underground and revolutionary civil war
may result in the institutionalization of violence as mode of social control in the post- revolution
era.*0 In the second place, it is not quite correct to say, as Fanon maintains, that violence re-creates
man by liberating his consciousness. It is true that Fanon is not alone in his appeal to violence as a
liberating force for man.21 Nevertheless, violence is not the only way to achieve liberation of
consciousness has been admitted by Fanon himself when he writes, "It is clear that other peoples have
come to the same conclusion in different ways. We know for sure today that in Algeria the test of force
was inevitable; but other countries through political action and through the work of clarification undertaken
by a party have led their people to the same results".3* Thus it is possible to achieve liberation of
consciousness through political education or mental contemplation rather than only through
violence. That violence is not the only way to achieve liberation of consciousness is also clear from the
experiences of Marx, Lenin, and a host of other revolutionaries. We know that Fanon himself did not
play any violent role in the Algerian revolution. How did he then acquire his revolutionary consciousness?
In the third place, some commentators, on the basis of the liberating role of violence, have regarded
Fanon as an advocate of "humanistic" and "non-violent violence".*8 But the fact that it is violence of
liberation, of emancipation, and of justice does not make it non-violent. Violence advocated to achieve the
aims of non-violence is still vio- lence and no amount of poetic juggling of words can escape this fact.
Hence the statement that Fanon is a humanist of violence appears to be " excessive, illusory, or simply
dishonest". After all, it is attributed to a man who has made violence a critical feature of his world policy.
It is this aspect of his concept of violence which is "considerably less convincing as policy".24

Futhermore, a fundamental objection may be raised against Fanon's view that violence frees the
individual from his fear and inferiority complexes. Fanon's own psychiatric case histories prove beyond
doubt that the act of killing is dehumanizing and that it leads to neurosis and distortion of
personality.25 An African militant had planted a bomb in cafe, killing ten. Every year, at about the same
time, he suffered from acute anxiety, insomnia and suicidal obsessions. An Algerian, whose own mother
had been wantonly murdered, himself wantonly killed a white woman who was on her knees begging
for mercy. As a result, he suffered, what Fanon calls, an anxiety psychosis of the depersonalization
type. Thus Fanon's own deep understanding of such cases makes his theory of renovating violence more
difficult to understand.28
Besides, Fanon's thesis that violence is a unifying force is questionable on several grounds. First violence
is the result of a psychological state of mind which is haunted by anger, hatred, divisions and fighting.
People who suffer from such psychological distortions may forge a bond of unity for a time being against
a common enemy, but there is no guarantee that such unity will continue after the disappearance
of the common enemy. Second, Teal unity is possible where there is harmony and friendship and
these can not be secured on the basis of violence. For the principle of violence means the
impossibility of union with oneself and -with other men. Third, the gang which is engaged in inflicting
violence on foreigners may adopt the same device of injuring one another in dealing with its own
members. Let it be noted that violence abroad is the mother of violence at home. Real solidarity lies in the
principle of union. But the absolute prevalence of violence means incapacity to act together and
consequently disintegration and dissolution.
In addition, Fanon maintains that violence always pays. But the trouble is that it pays indiscriminately.
It can utmost achieve short term goals. But the danger of violence, even within the framework of short
term goal, is that it introduces the practice of violence into the whole body politic. Fanon says that
violence can heal the wounds it has inflicted. "If this were true" says Arendt, "revenge would be the

Marked 15:28

cure-all for most of our ills".27

Fanon's idea on violence is a myth
far removed from reality. In fact, "violence does not promote causes, neither history nor revolution,
neither progress nor reaction".28 Atmost, it can serve to dramatize grievances and bring them to public
attention. It can only ensure a hearing for moderation. Thus violence, contrary to what Fanon tells us,
is more a weapon of reform than of revolution.
Fanon's absolutization of violence goes even further. For him violence is not just a method. He proclaims
it to be a value in its own right, equating it with revolution. Fanon believes that violence would emancipate
the masses politically and spiritually and would provide a safeguard against bureaucratic perversions of
the party and government system in the young states of the Third World. One need hardly go to any
lengths to argue that armed struggle alone, in whatever form and on whatever scale,, cannot ensure all
these things and that its success in preserving the revolutionary and democratic regime depends on the
political situation, the level of political consciousness, the political staunchness, and the broad
involvement of the masses even when they are waging it. Armed struggle i not an end in itself, still less a
panacea against counter revolution and reaction. This is. corroborated, among other things, by the
experience of Algeria after Fanon's death .
Lastly, it may also be said that Fanon's theory of violence is a queer mixture of revolutionary
romanticism and utopianism,. of revolutionary integrity and reckless venture, of heroic self- sacrifice
and political naivete. He attempts to foist violence upon the people from above. He forgets that such
type of violence is bound to end in intrigue and conspiracy. In fact, revolution must be the
achievement of something new. But the violence and the effects of violence - suspicion, resentment, and
hatred - are things only too familiar, too hopelessly unrevolutionary.


Anti-black violence is not gratuitous--- refuse their historiography because it
relies on transforming an historically inaccurate claim about violence into an
entire theory of ideology and subject formation
Ta-Nehisi Coates, senior editor for The Atlantic, A Flawed America in Context, February 13, 13,
Toward the end of our meal we began discussing how one can look at racism in history and avoid falling
into depression. My answer was two-fold. 1) I enjoy the history for its own sake. I love history whether it
has a political lesson to teach, or not. And 2) the history of white racism and its attendent victims is
horrifying, but it should be seen in scale. A taste of what I mean: The fugitives who fled from the south
after Nordlingen died of plague, hunger and exhaustion in the refugee camp at Frankfort or the
overcrowded hospitals of Saxony; seven thousand were expelled from the cantons of Zurich because
there was neither food no room for them, at Hanau the gates were closed against them, at Strasbourg
they lay thick in the streets through the frosts of winter, so that by day the citizens stepped over their
bodies, and by night lay awake listening to the groans of the sick and starving until the magistrates
forcibly drove them out, thirty thousand of them. The Jesuits here and there fought manfully against the
overwhelming distress; after the burning and desertion of Eichstatt they sought out the children who were
hiding in the cellars, killing and eating rats, and carried them off to care for and educate them; at Hagenau
they managed feed the poor out of their stores until the French troops raided their granary and took
charge of the grain for the Army. By the irony of fate the wine harvest of 1634, which should have been
excellent, was trampled down by fugitives, and invaders after Nordlingen; that of 635 suffered a like fate,
and in the winter, from Wuttemberg to Lorraine, there raged the worst famine of many years. At Calw the
pastor saw a woman gnawing on the raw flesh of a dead horse on which a hungry dog and some ravens
were also feeding. In Alsace the bodies of criminals were torn from the gallows and devoured; in the
whole Rhineland they watched the graveyards against marauders who sold the flesh of the newly buried
for food; at Zweibrucken a woman confessed to having eater her child. Acorns, goats' skins, grass, were
all cooked in Alsace; cats, dogs, and rats were sold in the market at Worms. In Fulda and Coburg and
near Frankfort and the great refugee camp, men went in terror of being killed and eaten by those
maddened by hunger... That is the great C.V. Wedgwood describing the last years of the Thirty Years War,
in which eight million people died, and the population of "Germany" (to the extent it existed) was reduced
by a third. One of my professors followed this up by noting that ten million Russians died in the first World
War, and then 15 million more died in the second. When you study racism, with all its attendent woes,
there is something comforting about those kind of numbers. It tells you that whatever you are struggling
with here is not a deviation from the human experience, but an expression of it. There is very little
that "white people" have done to "black people" that I can't imagine them doing to each other.
America's particular failings are remarkable because America is remarkable, but they are not
particularly deviant or outstanding on the misery index. This is just sort of what we do. The question
hanging over us though is this: Is this what we what we will always do?

The aff allows for voices from the bottom to have political space
Branch, Lecturer in African Politics, Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of
Cambridge as University, 11
(Adam, Displacing Human Rights: War and Intervention in Northern Uganda, Oxford University Press, Jul
25, 2011, Ch. 8)
or the sake of human rights. I offer two qualifications to this agenda of disintcrvention, however. First,
given the reality of episodes of extreme violence in Africa, during which questions of respecting selfdetermination and self-organization may become somewhat insignificant relative to the need to end mass
violence, I leave space in this general disinterventionist agenda for a practice of humanitarian
intervention focused on the cessation of hostilitiesan Africanized practice within specific limits and
made legally accountable. Second, given the reality of common political problems faced by Africa and the
West, I leave open the possibility of a limited form of solidarity, what I call solidarity with consequences,
which is based on the possibility of organizing and acting politically, but always self-critically, when
faced with common struggles that bridge the Africa-West divide.
1. Human Rights and Popular Sovereignty
A foundation for a democratic, noninterventionist concept of human rights can be found in Claude Lefort's
1980 "Politics and Human Rights," which makes a strong argument for human rights as a foundation of
democratic politics. Lefort attempts to refute Marx's classic denunciation ot human rights as amounting to
no more than the legal embodiment of egoistical, bourgeois man. Lefort, instead, argues that Marx
ignores those rights that, rather than implying egoistical, monadic man, imply man's capacity to think,
communicate, and act with others. That is, while Marx focuses his attack on the rights to private property
and security, he ignores the rights to freedom of opinion, speech, assembly, and organization, essential to
democratic politics. These latter rights, instead of isolating individuals, carve out a public space for
collective opinion formation and action and "point to a sphere which is ineffaceably external to
power."2 They establish the legitimacy of and freedom for collective action and for thought itselt in the
face of power and have the capacity to bring people together as freely communicating individuals oriented
toward common goals.3
Lefort expands on the importance of human rights for democratic politics, arguing that "Rights cannot be
dissociated from the awareness of rights."4 That is human rights work by providing a language that
allows people to understand themselves as rights-bearing agents, thus giving shape and
legitimacy to their struggles. As people come to see themselves in this way, they begin a process of
inclusive politicization that cannot be reversed. Lefort represents the struggle for human rights as a
struggle over the preconditions for democratic politics. By demanding their rights, people are not
only demanding the space in which they will be able to enjoy these freedoms, but, in the very act
of making those demands, they are doing what is to be guaranteed by the right itself. Human rights
become both form and content of democratic organization and action: the right to the freedom of speech
is won through speaking treely; the right to organize is won through organization. The dissemination of
the language of human rights not only catalyzes the struggle for those rights whose guarantee is
the formal foundation of independent thought and action, and thus of democracy, but also leads,
through the struggle itself, to the actualization of that independent thought and action which is the
concrete foundation of democracy.
This democratic concept of human rights is characterized by a focus on rights that imply relationships
among people, such that human rights are about collective deliberation and action, not about individual
testimony or external provision of goods or protection. The agency for demanding rights comes from
organized collectives whose rights are to be guaranteed in common, by the oppressed against their
oppressors, and not "claimed" by those who take an interest, however genuine, in alleviating the suffering
of others. Rights claims are not directed toward an unaccountable, ideologized "international
community," but rather toward building political communities and then toward those institutionalized
sites that retain a degree of responsiveness due to their dependence upon the people for legitimacy and

authority. As long as international institutions have only a philanthropic relationship with people in the
South, they are unaccountable politically and have no compulsion to respond, and so the nation-state
remains the only political institution in which that compulsion can be found, however attenuated it may be
as a result of states' reliance upon violence and donor support.

Alt fails and causes genocidal backlash
Emery 7, Phd, (Kathy, The Limits of Violent Resistance, For the Western Edition, August 27, 2007
The August 15th editorial for SF Bayview concluded that the only way to stop gentrification in the Bayview
is to go to war. Through all our marching and complaining and testifying at City Hall, our City Fathers still arent listening. At
this point, sadly, I dont think for a minute that anything is going to change if we continue to go the Martin route. I think we need to
channel Malcolm and the Panthersand start making some moves instead of making some noise . I
need some soldiers on my side, and as much as I am sure that there are people who are willing to protest, I need some people next
to me who are willing to go to war. By any means necessary. To me, the really sad thing, is that the editorialist , Ebony
Sparks, believes that there are only two routes or means of opposition to the dominant/white power

structurethat pursued by Martin Luther King Jrs Southern Christian Leadership Conference or that
pursued by Malcolm X and West Coast Black Panther Parties. Sparks apparently lumps the very different strategies
employed by SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee) and CORE (Congress of Racial Equality) into those employed by
the SCLC and NAACP. She also assumes that marching, and complaining and testifying is what constitutes
the full range of tactics employed by the SCLC. This could not be further from the truth. While I am completely
sympathetic and share Sparks impatience with the lack of people power in the Bay Area, I think she does not appreciate
the severe limitations and ramifications of violent resistance to the powers-that-be. In fact, any

attempts to resist gentrification violently would be used as an excuse to make all the undesirable
Bayview residents disappear that much more quickly. The state, especially in the era of Homeland
Security and the Patriot Act, can out-gun, out-infiltrate, and out-manipulate any individual or
group of people. To go to war with City Hall is to attack it at its strongest point, a suicidal
Picketts Charge, if you will.


Choosing to construct a narrative based on resistance and subject making is not
only possible but essential and is able to reverse libidinal violence
Walker, Psychological Studies, Birkbeck University, 12
(Tracey, The Future of Slavery: From Cultural Trauma to Ethical Remembrance, Graduate Journal of
Social Science July 2012, Vol. 9, Issue 2)
The point to make here is that although the concept of social death has proved useful for theorists to
describe the metaphysical experience of those who live antagonistically in relation to the social symbolic,
it is nevertheless a colonial narrative within which the slaves are confined to a one dimensional story
of terror. In keeping with Gilroys (1993b) argument that the memory of slavery must be constructed from
the slaves point of view, we might instead concentrate, not on the way in which the slaves are figured
within the European social imaginary, but on how they negotiated their own ideas about self and
identity. We might therefore find some value in studying a group like the Maroons who not only managed
to create an autonomous world outside of the hegemonic discourse which negated them, but also, due
to their unique circumstances, were forced to create new modes of communication which would include a
myriad of African cultures, languages and creeds (Gottlieb 2000). This creative and resistive energy of
slave subjectivity not only disrupts the colonial paradigm of socially dead slaves, but also implies the
ethical tropes of creation, renewal and mutual recognition.
In contrast, the passive slave proved to feature heavily in the 2007 bicentenary commemorations causing
journalist Toyin Agbetu to interrupt the official speeches and exclaim that it had turned into a discourse of
freedom engineered mostly by whites with stories of black agency excluded8. Youngs argument that one
of the damaging side effects of the focus on white peoples role in abolition is that Africans are
represented as being passive in the face of oppression, appears to echo the behaviour in the UK
today given that a recent research poll reveals that the black vote turnout is significantly lower than for the
white majority electorate and that forty percent of second generation immigrants believe that voting
doesnt matter.9 Yet, Gilroy (1993a) argues that this political passivity may not simply be a self fulfilling
prophecy, but might allude to the lived contradiction of being black and English which affects ones
confidence about whether opinions will be validated in a society that, at its core, still holds on to the
fantasy of European superiority (Gilroy 1993a). Without considering the slaves capacity for survival and
their fundamental role in overthrowing the European regime of slavery, we limit the usevalue of the

and risk becoming overly attached to singular slave subjectivities seeped in death and passivity.
The Maroons story however, enables slave consciousness to rise above the mire of slaverys abject
victims and establishes an ethical relation with our ancestors who lived and survived in the time of