ANSO120 | Autumn | 3 ECTS

The Anthropology of International Intervention

Andrew Gilbert Course dates: October 10, 11, 17, and 18 Ethnographic approaches have identified significant analytic blind spots in the scholarship on international intervention, blind spots rooted both in the limits of dominant technocratic problem-solving paradigms as well as in critiques which are concerned mostly with showing such interventions as a species of transnational neo-imperialism. Both are limited in what they can account for, particularly the unpredictable and creative processes of social and cultural production and transformation that happen at the scene of intervention This course develops such an accounting by a focus on and theorization of 'intervention encounters' the engagements across difference and inequality set in motion by policies, projects, and programs that aim to accomplish some goal of transformation, whether under the sign of humanitarianism, peace-building, democratization, development, transitional justice, or state-building. We will build an analysis of such engagements to reveal powerful dynamics and instabilities that decisively shape the politics and effects of such interventions as they unfold, one interaction at a time.