A New Lebanon Reborn, Again:

How can revolutionary energy escape the cycle of capitalist appropriation?

Abstract

This research project deals with hierarchies of power at play in Lebanon in a so-called post-colonial moment. At the basis of this research lies an interest in understanding how established structures of power and social organization reinvent themselves through crisis and uprisings. More precisely this research aims to understand the function of crisis and revolution within the body of capitalism, which in turn allows a better understanding of the potentials and risks of the uprising of October 2019 in Lebanon. I will look into how the desire of the individual is modulated by being part of a social body, to then study the effect of the Lebanese social structure at the desire of individual bodies and the body politic, and how this desire is transformed by lack and crisis.

 

I will draw on Deleuze and Guattari, as well as Spinoza, first to centre affect, allowing me to uncover flows of power and capital on a wide temporal and spatial spectrum between multiple levels of social arrangements, second, to align my work to theories of productive desire. This research will also engage with the works of post-colonial theorists, such as Franz Fanon, and Edward Said in order to examine the role of colonial expansion in current social structures, and account for the historical accumulation that establishes the normativity of these oppressive and exploitative systems. Besides, I will make use of the work of Lebanese intellectuals and scholars, like Fawaz Traboulsi, and Salim Nasr, to contextualise and ground my research in historical and contemporary events.

Full thesis (PDF)

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