Beerli, Monique jo, Solidarity Intervention. An ethnography of nonviolent transnational contention in the West Bank [en ligne], Genève, The Graduate Institute Geneva, coll. “eCahiers”, 2013.
All across the globe, individuals mobilize international support in defense of Palestinian rights and a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. However, these international activists are neither the beneficiaries of their efforts nor do they closely identify with the Palestinian population. Through an ethnographic analysis of social movement organizations and international activists active in the West Bank, this paper tries to understand the emergence of transnational collective action fighting for Palestinian rights since the second Intifada. To do so, this paper addresses structural as well as personal factors behind activists’ mobilization. Combining elements from social movement theory and Bourdieusian sociology, I conduct a meso-level inquiry of the principal solidarity organizations alongside a micro-level investigation of international volunteers participating in such organizational structures. Highlighting the specificity of transnational activism in the West Bank both in terms of opportunity structures and the lived experiences of international activists, I have tried to provide insight on how and why the Palestinian rights movement is able to gather so much international support.