Paper short abstract:
This paper builds on fieldwork in UN schools in Gaza and it discusses two programs directed to the children. These programs mark the children and education as part of the problems the Strip is facing. By learning about human rights and by not experiencing violence youth are expected to change.
Paper long abstract:
Gaza has experienced international interventions for about 60 years. Most people are for instance educated in UN-run schools. Internationally as well as locally, Gaza is continuously imagined as a society in deep crisis. The remedy of that crisis is however imagined differently by diverse actors. To most Gazans, Israeli and international policies should be altered, most importantly by eliminating the boycott of the Strip. To the international community, part of a solution seems to be that Palestinian youth change.
This paper builds on fieldwork in schools in Gaza in 2009, less than a year after the Israeli war. It discusses the imagined boundaries between Palestinians and 'other people' that became apparent in two programs directed to Gaza's pupils; one that introduced a subject of human rights and one that forbade physical punishment in schools. The paper analyzes the local responses of teachers and parents in relations to UN policies.
Imagining crisis through international intervention