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In suspension: the denial of the rights of the city for Palestinians in Israel and its effects on their socio-economic, cultural and political formation: the case of Umm Al-Fahem

Massalha, Manal (2014) In suspension: the denial of the rights of the city for Palestinians in Israel and its effects on their socio-economic, cultural and political formation: the case of Umm Al-Fahem. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

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Abstract

This thesis is concerned with the absence of substantive, functioning Palestinian cities, and of Palestinian urbanisation and urbanism in Israel. Framed and guided by conceptions of the city and public space, their potentialities, the possibilities they allow, and the challenges they pose to the state, the thesis using Umm al-Fahem as a case study seeks to investigate the Palestinian city in Israel, its materiality, the semiotics of its public space and socio-spatiality, and to deconstruct the historical, structural, political and social forces that shape its (un)making. Employing mixed qualitative methods of ethnography, photography, archival research, historical, sociological and discourse analysis, the thesis questions and deconstructs the nominal status of the city of Umm al-Fahem, the first Palestinian village to earn the official status of a city in Israel. It considers how to conceptualise Palestinian cities inside Israel and aims to give answers to questions such as: what can be made of Palestinian cities inside Israel? What kind of spatial configurations and arrangements are being formed and why? What kind of socio-political and cultural order is being formed and why? How does the city respond under (post)colonial conditions? Can there be a functioning Palestinian city and a fulfilment of the right to the city under (post)colonial conditions? Umm al-Fahem, the subject and object of research, suggests that the process unfolding is one of absenting the Palestinian city, depriving Palestinian citizens of the right to the city, and producing domesticated, suspended, fragmented city and citizens. The production and mastery of space is used as a technology of control to achieve this, and forms part of a governmentality project whose underlying objective is the management of Palestinians.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2014 Manal Massalha
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Sets: Departments > Sociology
Supervisor: Gilroy, Paul
URI: http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/3351

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