Dying to Serve: Militarism, Affect, and the Politics of Sacrifice in the Pakistan Army - South Asia in Motion (Paperback)Maria Rashid (author)
- Coming soon
The Pakistan Army is a uniquely powerful and influential institution, with vast landholdings and resources. It has deep roots in the colonial armed forces and relies heavily on certain regions to supply its soldiers, especially parts of rural Punjab, where men have served in the army for generations. These men, their wives and mothers, and the military culture surrounding them are the focus of Maria Rashid's Dying to Serve, which innovatively and sensitively addresses the question: how does the military thrive when so much of its work results in injury, debility, and death? Taking ritual commemorations of fallen soldiers as one critical site of study, Rashid argues that these "spectacles of mourning" are careful manipulations of affect, gendered and structured by the military to reinforce its omnipotence in the lives of its subjects. Grounding her study in the famed martial district of Chakwal, Rashid finds affect similarly deployed in recruitment and training practices, as well as management of death and compensation to families. She contends that understanding these affective technologies is crucial to challenging the appeal of the military institution globally.
Publisher: Stanford University Press
Number of pages: 288
Dimensions: 229 x 152 mm
"This is a unique contribution to critical studies of contemporary militarism as a global phenomenon, while simultaneously casting light on an institution that is not well understood outside its own national context. Ethnographic studies of military organizations are extremely rare due to the excessive secrecy of the defense sector, but Maria Rashid is able to demonstrate why and how gender is so central to this web of institutional and ideological power. This highly original study shows that we can learn about the appeal of military service by engaging with those who stand to lose the most from its allure: the women whose sons and husbands die in uniform." -- Vron Ware, Professor of Sociology and Gender Studies * Kingston University *
"This absorbing and troubling book grapples with the puzzle of how the Pakistani military can hold the devotion and loyalty of so many citizens while promising them endless wars, death, and impairment. Rashid's thoughtful and at times harrowing account draws on sensitive ethnography with families of martyrs and unprecedented access to military ceremonies to weave a persuasive argument about the power of martyrdom and ritualistic mourning as technologies of rule." -- Laleh Khalili * Queen Mary University of London *
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