Operating with Distinction: Mobilizing Boundaries of Difference

Maia Carter Hallward

in Struggling for a Just Peace

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780813036526
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813041797 | DOI:
Operating with Distinction: Mobilizing Boundaries of Difference

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Continued trends of unilateralism on the part of Israeli and Palestinian governments and the failure to achieve socio-political change led some activist groups to shift their efforts toward activities mobilizing boundaries of distinction, or difference. Boycott efforts, notably the boycott of the Hamas government and the boycott of companies and products benefiting from the Israeli occupation were notable examples of the distinction mechanism in action, as were a variety of efforts by Israeli activists to differentiate themselves from Israeli occupation policies and Palestinian efforts to create alternative political parties. Palestinian groups al Mubadara and Bringing Peace Together institutionalized between 2005 and 2008 in an effort to raise voices for a “third democratic way,” and Machsom Watch women struggled to find ways of combating the consolidation of checkpoint infrastructure without simultaneously legitimizing it. The chapter overviews how activists used the mechanism of distinction and the power dimensions involved.

Keywords: boycott; distinction; unilateralism; occupation; institutionalization; Machsom Watch

Chapter.  7957 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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