[P6508] Governing through the Senses: Garbage and other Slow Violences

Created by Michelle Weitzel
Monday, 11/29/21 2:00 pm


Daily experiences and negotiations scale up from the personal to impact politics in diverse and sometimes unexpected ways. Likewise, political elites engage everyday practices and trending events to maximize their visibility, align themselves with popular programs, or, more perniciously, to effect control over populations and territory. This panel brings together scholars to foster a better understanding of everyday micropolitics in Middle East societies, highlighting significant findings related to the senses and embodied modes of knowing via fine-grained, empirical investigations into seemingly banal events and practices. Papers examine contemporary environmental issues in Morocco by turning to waste as both a material and conceptual actant in politics; to digital infrastructures and the critical impact of internet speeds in moments of civil strife and political mobilization in Lebanon; to the question of temporal ordering and regimes of mobility in the Palestinian West Bank; and to sewage as a mode of sensory communication and discourse between Palestine and Israel. In these discussions, each paper grapples with questions of tangibility and everyday contestations which govern and shape political life in their specific context. Relying on the analysis of media texts, institutional discourse, participant interviews, and ethnographic field work, they contribute to growing literature on microfoundational approaches to the political world and productively interrogate the site of politics itself.


Pol Science; Pol Science




Hiba Bou Akar

(Columbia University)
Panel Participating Role(s): Chair;

Lauren Baker

(Northwestern University)
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;

Jose Martinez

(University of Cambridge)
Panel Participating Role(s): Discussant;

Michelle Weitzel

(University of Basel)
Panel Participating Role(s): Organizer; Presenter;

Heather Jaber

(Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania)
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;

Hana Masri

(University of Pennsylvania)
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;