Julie Peteet, PhD



Prof. Peteet’s newest book Space and Mobility in Palestine, (Indiana University Press, 2017) argues that mobility is key to the elaboration and affirmation of place as spaces of particular forms of power, identity, and meaning in a contemporary settler-colonial context. Israeli policies of closure and separation, and their associated physical structures and bureaucratic requirements and procedures  (the wall, checkpoints, the road system and permits), dramatically constrain Palestinian mobility, impede their ability to construct and give meaning to place and are critical to opening up space to be reconfigured along new, and exclusionary, demographic lines of identity and affiliation. This book analyzes how Palestinians comprehend, experience, narrate, and respond to late modern Israeli colonialism with its relentless acquisition of  land (and water), settlement building, and  practices such as separation and closure, to spatially fracture and immobilize them. Several key concepts and processes are at play: a colonial occupation with a complex set of regulatory practices, the imposition of calibrated chaos, punishment and rule through the construction of spaces of disorder, the application of bio-metric technologies of surveillance and monitoring to control mobility and velocity, all of which rest upon the elaboration and management of social categories of difference along which the partitioning of, and access to space, is organized.