Movement and the Ordering of Freedom: On Liberal Governances of Mobility
Between Imaginary Lines: Violence and Its Justifications at the Military Checkpoints in Occupied Palestine
Hagar Kotef, Merav Amir, 2015. "Between Imaginary Lines: Violence and Its Justifications at the Military Checkpoints in Occupied Palestine", Movement and the Ordering of Freedom: On Liberal Governances of Mobility, Hagar Kotef
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The chapter examines the regime of movement in the West Bank, and the work of the Human Rights organization MachsomWatch (Checkpoint Watch.) Drawing on Foucault’s framework of disciplinary power, it examines the political technologies through which space is organized and movement is regulated at the checkpoints, and traces the process through which checkpoints consolidated into “terminals.” Finally, it analyzes the role of activism in this process. Specifically, it shows how in the case of Checkpoint-Watch, radical politics on the Israeli-Palestinian axis produces conservative gender practices: in order to be effective, activists assume traditional gender roles that enable them to be heard in the nationalistic Israeli public arena. Yet these gendered (most often maternal) roles prompt a misreading of their action. The chapter argues that this misreading depoliticizes the activists’ critique, and eventually incorporates it to justify the entrenchment of the checkpoints – the very object they struggle to dismantle.