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Hamzić, Vanja (2019) Binaries, Intersected: The Trouble of Global Governance in Post-colonial Mali. In: discussion on Vasuki Nesiah’s ‘Trigger: Gender as Tool and Weapon’, Inaugural Annual Lecture on Gender Studies and Law, October 2019, SOAS University of London. (Unpublished)

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I could not think of a better, more engaging and more urgent way to celebrate the inception of the annual SOAS Lecture on Gender Studies and Law! What Vasuki has just given us is, indeed, a masterclass in decolonial feminist critique of the emergent, troublesome nexus between international conflict feminism, lawfare and ‘countering violent extremism’ (CVE) projects. Vasuki, I find your analysis of these three intersecting global governance projects entirely convincing and necessary, in particular in its insistence on framing the post-colonial Muslim Other as the target of such a concerted operation, and one that very clearly relies on well-entrenched colonial deployments of personhood and agency. I could not agree more that the dangerous dichotomy these governance strategies simultaneously incite into being is that of the violent Muslim male ‘outlaw’—him being this especially because his legal allegiances seem to had diverged from the purported ‘good’ to the ostensible ‘bad’ interpretations of the sharīʿa—and the ubiquitous oppressed Muslim woman in need of saving. The imagery, the comments and the tell-tale gender-binary black letter of the Rome Statute that you bring forth in your stirring narrative all unambiguously allude to the making and maintaining of a perilous neo-colonial liberal legal symbiosis. This symbiosis uses the same old colonial hierarchical ‘civilisational’ and ‘civilisatory’ tropes, the same old distinction between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ non-liberal subjects and their ordinarily less-than- adequate legalities, and the same old geopolitical reasoning that translates the discursive and legal European anxieties about the Muslim Other into much more exploitative and explosive—and literally so—military bombing-cum-governance operations in the global south.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Items (Speech)
SOAS Departments & Centres: School Research Centres > Centre for the Study of Colonialism, Empire and International Law
Departments and Subunits > School of Law
Departments and Subunits > Interdisciplinary Studies > Centre for Gender Studies
Date Deposited: 05 Jan 2020 13:44

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