We are seeking participants for a panel for the Middle East Studies Association Annual Meeting: MESA 2013 “The Local Production of Neoliberal Forms of Governance in the Middle East”.
Neoliberalism is a term that refers to forms of governance which have emerged in the past couple of decades and refers to the expansion of economic rationalities into all domains of social-political life. The expansion and reproduction of neoliberal forms of governance in non-Western countries has been examined by a number of scholars who seek to understand the political effects of neoliberalism. In these studies the global has often been pitted against the local and the focus has been on the ways in which neoliberalism is imposed upon a number of national contexts, political dynamics and historical trajectories. In contrast to this ‘diffusion hypothesis’, in this panel we seek scholars who critically and empirically revisit the ‘actually existing’ politics of neoliberalism in the region, and seek to uncover the mechanisms through which neoliberal forms of governance are produced locally by actors on the ground. Put another way, we want to understand how neoliberal forms of governance are adopted, reimagined and reproduced with reference to local cultural-religious values, domestic narratives and national histories. We are especially interested in studies which examine the ways in which neoliberal ethics, practices and subjectivities are reconstituted differently in various local settings.
Possible topics include: economic crises, Arab Spring, blending of religious values and neoliberal ethics, democratic politics, developmental states, gender issues, welfare programs, poverty reduction, civil society, social movements, higher education, cities and health.
Please submit abstracts (200-300 words) to both firstname.lastname@example.org AND email@example.com by February 1st, 2013.
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