New book: Israel’s Occupation

New book announced:

Israel’s Occupation Neve Gordon. Univ. of California, $21.95 (344p) ISBN 978-0-520-25530-2

Applying the work of Michel Foucault to the contemporary Middle East, this highly theoretical book examines the “means of control used to manage” the Palestinian population in the Occupied Territories of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Gordon, a professor of politics at Ben-Gurion University, begins by exploring the diffuse mechanisms of power—in the political, civilian, geographical and economic arenas—used to normalize the occupation in its first years, making the ostensibly temporary occupation permanent. Later chapters take a more specific historical approach, examining a series of events that radically transformed these power structures: the first intifada, the Oslo Accords and the second intifada, which, the author argues, required a reorganization of Israeli power in the Occupied Territories, leading to the disregard of the Palestinians inhabiting those territories. Gordon focuses on the treatment of Palestinians in the Occupied Territories and writes for a decidedly scholarly audience; as a result, the book’s usefulness beyond academics will likely be limited. (Nov.)

Via Publisher’s Weekly


3 Responses

  1. I am a Foucalut lover but the premise of this book is disgusting. It’s nothing new that we haven’t heard about the Biopolitics of War. And worse it makes itself sound as though Israel is committing a unique atrocity when, in fact, the so-called Palistinian state has been using religion to control Israel for years. Consider that when we think of Israel we don’t think of them as those who seek peace, we think of a nation at war. But which side broke the last 4 peace treaties? Not Israel.

  2. I couldn’t disagree more. It seems entirely appropriate to me for Foucault scholars to examine the Israeli occupation of Palestine through a biopolitical lens.

    It also seems a bit of a stretch to say that the Palestinians are managing Israel, since they can’t even get food in through the siege, as Sara Roy points out in her recent LRB piece.

  3. Agreed with Jeremy

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