Monday, December 10, 2012

Welcome to Disidentification

First, I noticed this:

Poll: Half of Israeli Arabs don't intend to vote in January elections
83% say they don't trust the government; Israeli-Palestinian conflict tops list of concerns for just 8%.

Eighty-two percent of Israeli Arabs place little or no faith in the government and 67 percent lack confidence in the Arab political parties, according to a survey on the election patterns of Israeli Arabs that will be presented today at a conference at the University of Haifa.

The Statnet poll [with] the Institute for the Advancement of Democracy in Arab Society, shows that about half of the 455 respondents would not be voting in the upcoming Knesset elections - similar to the last national election, in which 54 percent of Israel's Arabs cast a vote.

One reason given for the decision is that the respondents felt no party represented them, especially because of the multiplicity of Arab parties.

"There is a clear lack of confidence in the system, and also in the possibility of reaching a peace agreement with the Palestinians," said As'ad Ghanem, a political scientist at the University of Haifa who will be presenting the poll results together with his colleague Nohad Ali, a sociologist.

And then, a friend passed on to me this:

In an article titled “The Cause of the Other,” Rancière develops the concept of “disidentification” in relation to an event that occurred a year after the publication of the Manifesto, on October 17, 1961: the massacre, in the center of Paris, of an estimated 200 Algerian civilians protesting a racist curfew. In his account, October 17 marks a moment of disidentification with the state that claimed to act in the name of the French. The first step in what he calls “political subjectivation,” disidentification is the “refusal to identify with a certain ‘self’” — in this case, the French citizen, defined by the state in opposition to its colonial subjects. Equally important are the second and third steps in the process of political subjectivation: a relation to “an other that constitutes a community defined by a certain wrong” (here, the Algerians); and “an impossible identification” with this other. Political subjectivation, then, demands both disidentification and impossible identification, refusal of self and espousal of the cause of the other, who remains, nevertheless, not-me.

Of course, there is this, too:

Right-wing parties seek to ban Arab parties from upcoming Israel elections

Right-wing lawmakers have asked the Central Elections Committee to bar United Arab List-Ta'al and Arab party Balad from the January 22 vote - citing support for the 2010 Gaza flotilla and the denial of Israel as a Jewish state.

...Eldad and Ben Ari mentioned comments they say prove that the parties should not be allowed to run for the Knesset. They note Zuabi's presence on the Mavi Marmara, a ship that tried to run Israel's blockade on Gaza in May 2010. They added that Zuabi told Al-Jazeera that her party sought to "come out against the Zionist enterprise, against the definition of the state as the Jewish state."

Eldad and Ben Ari also cited a May 2010 Channel 2 interview with United Arab List-Ta'al MK Ahmed Tibi, who said "the way you pressure prisoners in jail, we will pressure Gilad Shalit." Tibi said yesterday that this statement had been taken out of context.

Just plain dissing?


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