Transfer and Partition in the Middle East

Episode 389


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In the wake of the First World War, the League of Nations oversaw internationally-recognized projects of separation and transfer as the new borders of the Middle East were drawn under the influence of British and French imperial rule. In this episode, we speak to Laura Robson about her research for the book States of Separation, which studied how imperial rule under the mandate system in Iraq, Palestine, and Syria shaped communal definition and relations. In our conversation, we focus on the ways in which the states of the period sought to manage and move minority populations through a scheme to resettle Iraq's Assyrians in South America and other policies of the mandate period.  

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Contributor Bios

Laura Robson is a professor of history at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, currently focusing on histories of forced migration, the construction of refugee and asylum policies, and mass violence in the colonial and postcolonial Middle East. Her most recent books are States of Separation: Transfer, Partition, and the Making of the Middle East (University of California, 2017) and the forthcoming edited volume Partitions: A Transnational History of 20th Century Territorial Separatism (with Arie Dubnov; Stanford, 2019).
Chris Gratien is Assistant Professor of History at University of Virginia, where he teaches classes on global environmental history and the Middle East. He is currently preparing a monograph about the environmental history of the Cilicia region of the former Ottoman Empire from the 1850s until the 1950s.

Credits


Episode No. 389
Release Date: 31 October 2018
Recording Location: Neuchâtel, Switzerland
Audio editing by Chris Gratien
Music: Special thanks to karagüneş
Bibliography courtesy of Laura Robson


Select Bibliography

Renee Hirschon, Crossing the Aegean: an appraisal of the 1923 compulsory population exchange between Greece and Turkey (New York, 2004)

Ben White, The Making of Minorities in the Middle East: The Politics of Community in French Mandate Syria (Edinburgh, 2011)

Eric Weitz, "From the Vienna to the Paris System: International Politics and the Entangled Histories of Human Rights, Forced Deportations, and Civilizing Missions," AHR (2008)

Leila Fawaz, A Land of Aching Hearts: The Middle East in the Great War (Cambridge, Ma., 2014)

Daniel Cohen, "The Politics of Recognition: Jewish Refugees in Relief Policies and Human Rights Debates, 1945-1950," Immigrants and Minorities (2006)

Mark Levene, Genocide in the Age of the Nation State (London, 2005)





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