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The Making of a Human Bomb: An Ethnography of Palestinian Resistance - The Cultures and Practice of Violence (Hardback)
  • The Making of a Human Bomb: An Ethnography of Palestinian Resistance - The Cultures and Practice of Violence (Hardback)
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The Making of a Human Bomb: An Ethnography of Palestinian Resistance - The Cultures and Practice of Violence (Hardback)

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£86.00
Hardback 288 Pages / Published: 24/07/2009
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In The Making of a Human Bomb, Nasser Abufarha, a Palestinian anthropologist, explains the cultural logic underlying Palestinian martyrdom operations (suicide attacks) launched against Israel during the Al-Aqsa Intifada (2000-06). In so doing, he sheds much-needed light on how Palestinians have experienced and perceived the broader conflict. During the Intifada, many of the martyrdom operations against Israeli targets were initiated in the West Bank town of Jenin and surrounding villages. Abufarha was born and raised in Jenin. His personal connections to the area enabled him to conduct ethnographic research there during the Intifada, while he was a student at a U.S. university.

Abufarha draws on the life histories of martyrs, interviews he conducted with their families and members of the groups that sponsored their operations, and examinations of Palestinian literature, art, performance, news stories, and political commentaries. He also assesses data-about the bombers, targets, and fatalities caused-from more than two hundred martyrdom operations carried out by Palestinian groups between 2001 and 2004. Some involved the use of explosive belts or the detonation of cars; others entailed armed attacks against Israeli targets (military and civilian) undertaken with the intent of fighting until death. In addition, he scrutinized suicide attacks executed by Hamas and Islamic Jihad between 1994 and 2000. In his analysis of Palestinian political violence, Abufarha takes into account Palestinians' understanding of the history of the conflict with Israel, the effects of containment on Palestinians' everyday lives, the disillusionment created by the Oslo peace process, and reactions to specific forms of Israeli state violence. The Making of a Human Bomb illuminates the Palestinians' perspective on the conflict with Israel and provides a model for ethnographers seeking to make sense of political violence.

Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822344285
Number of pages: 288
Weight: 522 g
Dimensions: 229 x 155 x 23 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"The Making of a Human Bomb by Nasser Abufarha is required reading, for it links the 21st century's leading sociological perspective (culture) with the new century's quintessential form of political violence (suicide bombers, or SBs)." - Albert J. Bergesen, American Journal of Sociology
"With this book, [Abufarha] has made several incisive contributions, and not only towards understanding the suicide bombers of the Intifada. Yet non-Palestinian scholars invested in research and reading about Palestine should read Abufarha's book not only for his insightful analysis but also for the value of his reportage of the 'on the ground' perspectives of Palestinians in the northern West Bank. On both accounts, and various mixtures thereof, this is an important book I highly recommend." - Les W. Field, Journal of Anthropological Research
"Abufarha can hardly be blamed for this apparent disconnect between his strongest material and his analytical conclusions. It results from writing perhaps the most difficult kind of ethnography imaginable, one whose physical subject has vanished and been replaced by competing ideologies. Abufarha deserves credit for rising to this challenge and writing an insightful, passionately researched, and consistently provocative if analytically uneven book. He has broken new ground; may others join him in tilling it." - Diana Allan, American Ethnologist
"[Abufarha's] research is extensive and his thesis powerful. . . ." - Steven E. Levingston, Washington Post "Short Stack" blog
"[T]he best book I've come across on explaining the source of conflict. . . . The author does a very good job of presenting a complex situation and making it understandable. It's a powerful book. I'd highly recommend it to anyone interested in the core reasons behind the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, understanding the Palestinian use of suicide attacks on civilians, and/or understanding some factors which drive the acceptance and use of suicide bombs in any culture." - Debbie White, Different Time, Different Place blog
"The Making of a Human Bomb by Nasser Abufarha is required reading, for it links the 21st century's leading sociological perspective (culture) with the new century's quintessential form of political violence (suicide bombers, or SBs)." - Albert J. Bergesen, American Journal of Sociology
"The Making of a Human Bomb is a powerful book. Reflecting on suicide bombings, Nasser Abufarha explains more: the collective state of mind of the Palestinian population since the Oslo process broke down in 2000. His book will be quite useful for anyone seeking to understand the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as perceived from the Palestinian side."-John Quigley, author of The Case for Palestine: An International Law Perspective
"The Making of a Human Bomb by Nasser Abufarha is required reading, for it links the 21st century's leading sociological perspective (culture) with the new century's quintessential form of political violence (suicide bombers, or SBs)." -- Albert J. Bergesen * American Journal of Sociology *
"[T]he best book I've come across on explaining the source of conflict. . . . The author does a very good job of presenting a complex situation and making it understandable. It's a powerful book. I'd highly recommend it to anyone interested in the core reasons behind the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, understanding the Palestinian use of suicide attacks on civilians, and/or understanding some factors which drive the acceptance and use of suicide bombs in any culture." -- Debbie White * Different Time Different Place blog *
"Abufarha can hardly be blamed for this apparent disconnect between his strongest material and his analytical conclusions. It results from writing perhaps the most difficult kind of ethnography imaginable, one whose physical subject has vanished and been replaced by competing ideologies. Abufarha deserves credit for rising to this challenge and writing an insightful, passionately researched, and consistently provocative if analytically uneven book. He has broken new ground; may others join him in tilling it." -- Diana Allan * American Ethnologist *
"With this book, [Abufarha] has made several incisive contributions, and not only towards understanding the suicide bombers of the Intifada. Yet non-Palestinian scholars invested in research and reading about Palestine should read Abufarha's book not only for his insightful analysis but also for the value of his reportage of the 'on the ground' perspectives of Palestinians in the northern West Bank. On both accounts, and various mixtures thereof, this is an important book I highly recommend." -- Les W. Field * Journal of Anthropological Research *

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