Normalizing Occupation

Normalizing Occupation

The Politics of Everyday Life in the West Bank Settlements
Edited by Ariel Handel, Marco Allegra and Erez Maggor
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 01/09/2017
Format: Hardback 4 b&w illus., 2 maps
ISBN: 978-0-253-02473-2
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Controversy surrounds Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank, and the radical national and religious agendas at play there have come to define the area in the minds of many. This study, however, provides an alternative framework for understanding the process of "normalization" in the life of Jewish residents. Considering a wider range of historical and structural factors in which the colonization of the West Bank developed it allows placing its origins and everyday reality into a wider perspective. The works collected consider the transformation of the landscape, the patterns of relationships shared by the region's residents, Palestinian and Jewish alike, and the lasting effects of Israel’s settlement policy. Stressed in particular are such factors as urban planning, rising inequality and the retreat of the welfare state, and the changing political economy of industry and employment. In doing so, the authors collected here provide new insight into the integration and segregation processes that are an integral part of the broader historical trends shaping Israel/Palestine.

Author Bio

Marco Allegra is research fellow at the Instituto de Ciencias Sociais of the University of Lisbon. His publications include Palestinesi. Storia e identita di un popolo [The Palestinian People: A History] (2010) and the edited collection Conflict in the City: Contested Urban Spaces and Local Democracy (with Enrico Gualini and Joao Mourato, 2015).

Ariel Handel is the director of the Lexicon for Political Theory and co-director of the Minerva Humanities Center at Tel Aviv University. He is the editor-in-chief of The Political Lexicon of the Social Protest (in Hebrew; co-edited, 2012).

Erez Maggor is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Sociology at New York University and an Israel Institute Doctoral Fellow.


“Several disciplinary and theoretical frameworks are employed and applied simultaneously, creating a kaleidoscope of complementing perspectives: political economy, urban, suburban and geographical planning, demography, political theory, political theology, human geography, and anthropology. The settlements are studied in their full diversity and heterogeneity, shattering a common prejudice to look mainly at the religious-nationalist, ideologically driven among them. The authors show in detail how the colonization project involves communities and agents coming from all sectors of Israeli society. ”
 — Ariella Azoulay, co-author of The One-State Condition: Occupation and Democracy in Israel/Palestine

“This book is an essential addition to an academic library and ideal for researchers dealing with related Middle East subjects.”
 — Association of Jewish Libraries Reviews

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Normalizing the Occupation: the Making of the Jewish West Bank Settlements / Marco Allegra, Ariel Handel and Erez Maggor
Part I - Across the Green Line: Suburbanization, Privatization and the Settlements
1. The Settlements and the Relationship between Privatization and the Occupation / Daniel Gutwein
2. Settlement as Suburbanization: The Banality of Colonization / David Newman
3. "Outside Jerusalem—yet so Near": Ma’ale Adumim, Jerusalem, and the suburbanization of Israel’s settlement policy / Marco Allegra
4. Educating Architecture (photo essay) / Miki Kratsman and Ruthie Ginsburg
Part II – Between Cities and Outposts: the Heterogeneity of the Settlements and the Settlers
5. Embedded Politics in a West Bank Settlement / Hadas Weiss
6. Informal Outposts in the West Bank: Normality in Gray Space / Erez Tzfadia
7. From Ghetto-politics to Geo-politics: Ultra-Orthodox Settlements in the West Bank / Lee Cahaner
8. "A Blessed Deviation in Jewish History": On Contemporary forms of Messianism among Religiously Motivated Settlers in the West Bank / Assaf Harel
Part III - Forced Co-existence: Palestinians and Jewish Settlers
9. From Kubniya to Outpost: A Genealogy of the Palestinian Conceptualization of Jewish Settlement in a Shifting National Context / Honaida Ghanem
10. Integrated or Segregated? Employment Relations in the Settlements / Amir Paz-Fuchs and Yael Ronen
11. Jerusalem's Colonial Space as Paradox: Palestinians Living in the Settlements / Wendy Pullan and Haim Yacobi