Contentious Economics in Occupied Palestine

This chapter argues that in the aftermath of the post-2011 Arab uprisings, the political and economic protests in occupied Palestine constituted cycles of contention but failed to transform into a social movement for political and economic rights. The fragmented or repressed protests against the neoliberal economic policies of the Palestinian Authority (PA), the international aid industry, and the economic framework of the Oslo Accords, constituted forms of contentious collective actions where different actors joined forces to confront and expose repressive authorities. Theoretically, this chapter uses the Palestinian case to operationalize notions of contentious economics as an integral but distinctive feature in the theories of contentious politics. Empirically, it discusses the implications of the PA’s neoliberal economic policies and critiques the aid industry, as root causes for contention. Based on the concepts and exercise of contentious politics, this chapter proposes the model of resistance economy to confront neoliberalism. The interaction between theories of contentious politics, concepts of contentious economics, and the empirical dimensions of a resistance economy constitutes this chapter’s primary contribution to the scholarly literature.

Contentious Economics in Occupied Palestine, Book Chapter in “Contentious Politics in the Middle East”, edited by Prof. Fawaz Gerges, Palgrave Macmillan, September 2015. Click here for additional information.

Click here to read the Introductory Chapter.