The Borders of Colonial Encounter: The Case of Israel’s Wall

In: Asian Journal of Social Science
Ahmad H. Sa’diBen-Gurion University of the Negev

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Although Israel’s constructed wall in the West Bank has been discussed in a voluminous literature, some basic questions have largely remained unanswered. This paper tackles two such questions: Firstly, what is the relationship between Zionism and the conception of the wall? This question follows an assumption that the wall’s idea is neither new, nor was it solely triggered by immediate security considerations. Secondly, why do European countries (in addition to the U.S.) oppose the imposition of sanctions against Israel for breaching international law by building the wall? A post-colonial perspective has been employed to discuss the role that borders (particularly hard ones) have assumed in the colonial encounter in the stages of expansive and contraction colonialism. Moreover, through this perspective, the common experience of Israel and the European colonial heritage with regard boundaries is considered.

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