Beyond the erotics of Orientalism. Lawfare, torture and the racial-sexual grammars of legitimate suffering

Richter-Montpetit, Melanie (2014) Beyond the erotics of Orientalism. Lawfare, torture and the racial-sexual grammars of legitimate suffering. Security Dialogue, 45 (1). pp. 43-62. ISSN 0967-0106

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Abstract

Contrary to commonsense understandings of torture as a form of information-gathering, confessions elicited through the use of torture produce notoriously unreliable data, and most interrogation experts oppose it as a result. With a focus on the US carceral regime in the War on Terror, this article explores the social relations and structures of feelings that make torture and other seemingly ineffective and absurd carceral practices possible and desirable as technologies of security. While much of international relations scholarship has focused on the ways in which affective and material economies of Orientalism are central to representations of the ‘terrorist’ threat, this article connects the carceral violences in the racialized lawfare against Muslimified people and spaces to the capture and enslavement of Africans and the concomitant production of the figure of the Black body as the site of enslaveability and openness to gratuitous violence. The article further explores how these carceral security practices are not simply rooted in racial–sexual logics of Blackness, but themselves constitute key sites and technologies of gendered and sexualized race-making in this era of ‘post-racial triumph’ (HoSang and LaBennett, 2012: 5).

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > International Relations
Research Centres and Groups: Centre for Advanced International Theory
Depositing User: Melanie Richter-Montpetit
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2018 07:56
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2019 14:21
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/79010

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