Between friends and foes: assembling collaborators in medical aid provision in occupied Palestinian territories
(University of Latvia)
Paper short abstract:
The paper explores medical aid providers and their clients in Israeli-Palestinian conflict situation revealing the role of the conflict, its consequences and resistance to it in assembling collaborators on both sides.
Paper long abstract:
Using an Israeli-based mobile clinic visit to Palestinian refugee camp as a core story, I look at the assemblage of collaborators on both sides. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict creates not only physical, economic and political separation between Israeli and Palestinians but also generates new forms of collaboration where the relationship formed by the occupation takes a central place. Visits of the clinic are one-time event and do not establish long-term personal connections. Ritual forms and rhetorical strategies are used assembling collaborators from several opposite characteristics and balancing between friends and foes; passive aid receivers and active partners; healing and short-term relief; medical practice and Islamic tradition. Collaboration thus is viewed as a two way track where mutual constitution of collaborators is taking place assembling meanings from the collaboration process and its context. The paper is based on 28 interviews and conversations and observations during 10 visits to Israeli and Palestinian hospitals, ambulance service and mobile clinic.
Collaboratively assembling persons