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Third World Protest: Between Home and the World

Rao, Rahul (2010) Third World Protest: Between Home and the World. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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Abstract

If boundaries protect us from threats, how should we think about the boundaries of states in a world where threats to human rights emanate from both outside the state and the state itself? Arguing that attitudes towards boundaries are premised on assumptions about the locus of threats to vital interests, Rahul Rao probes beneath two major normative orientations towards boundaries-cosmopolitanism and nationalism-which structure thinking on questions of public policy and identity. Insofar as the Third World is concerned, hegemonic versions of both orientations are underpinned by simplistic imageries of threat. In the cosmopolitan gaze, political and economic crises in the Third World are attributed mainly to factors internal to the Third World state with the international playing the role of heroic saviour. In Third World nationalist imagery, the international is portrayed as a realm of neo-imperialist predation from which the domestic has to be secured. Both images capture widely held intuitions about the sources of threats to human rights, but each by itself provides a resolutely partial inventory of these threats. By juxtaposing critical accounts of both discourses, Rao argues that protest sensibilities in the current conjuncture must be critical of hegemonic variants of both cosmopolitanism and nationalism. The second half of the book illustrates what such a critique might look like. Journeying through the writings of James Joyce, Rabindranath Tagore, Edward Said and Frantz Fanon, the activism of 'anti-globalisation' protesters, and the dilemmas of queer rights activists, Rao demonstrates that important currents of Third World protest have long battled against both the international and the domestic, in a manner that combines nationalist and cosmopolitan sensibilities.

Item Type: Authored Books
Keywords: cosmopolitanism, nationalism, communitarianism, protest, postcolonial, Third World, anti-colonial, anti-globalisation, queer
SOAS Departments & Centres: Faculty of Law and Social Sciences > Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy (CISD)
Faculty of Law and Social Sciences > Department of Politics and International Studies
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
J Political Science > JC Political theory
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BJ Ethics
ISBN: 9780199560370
Copyright Statement: The moral rights of the author have been asserted. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior permission in writing of Oxford University Press, or as expressly permitted by law, or under terms agreed with the appropriate reprographics rights organization. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside the scope of the above should be sent to the Rights Department, Oxford University Press.
Depositing User: Rahul Rao
Date Deposited: 15 Jul 2010 10:35
URI: http://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/8791

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