Resisting Occupation in KashmirUniversity of Pennsylvania Press The Ethnography of Political Violence
The last decade has been a transformative period in Kashmir, the hotly contested and densely militarized border territory located high in the Himalayan mountains between India and Pakistan. Suppressed and unheard, Kashmiri political aspirations were subordinated to larger geopolitical concerns—by opposing governments laying claim to Kashmir, by security experts promoting bilateral peace settlements in the region, and by academic researchers studying the conflict. But since 2008, Kashmiris who grew up in the midst of armed insurgency and counterinsurgency warfare have been deploying new strategies for challenging India's state and military apparatus and projecting their legal and political claims for freedom from Indian rule to global audiences. Resisting Occupation in Kashmir analyzes the social and legal logic of India's occupation of Kashmir in relation to colonialism, militarization, power, democracy, and sovereignty. It also traces how Kashmiri youth are drawing on the region's long history of armed rebellion against Indian domination to reimagine the freedom struggle in the twenty-first century.
Resisting Occupation in Kashmir presents new ways of thinking and writing about Kashmir that cross conventional boundaries and point toward alternative ways of conceptualizing the past, present, and future of the region. The volume brings together junior and senior scholars from various disciplinary backgrounds who have conducted extensive fieldwork during the past decade in various regions of Kashmir. The contributors, many of whom were born and raised during the peak of the conflict in the 1990s, offer ethnographically grounded perspectives on contemporary social, legal, and political life in ways that demonstrate the multiplicity of experiences of Kashmiri communities. The essays highlight the ways in which this scholarly orientation—built through collaboration and dialogue across different kinds of borders—offers a new critical approach to Kashmir studies at this transformative and generative moment.
Contributors: Mona Bhan, Haley Duschinski, Farrukh Faheem, Gowhar Fazili, Bruce Hoffman, Mohamad Junaid, Seema Kazi, Ershad Mahmud, Cynthia Mahmood, Saiba Varma, Ather Zia.
Introduction. "Rebels of the Streets": Violence, Protest, and Freedom in Kashmir
—Mona Bhan, Haley Duschinski, and Ather Zia
Chapter 1. Contesting the Law, Contesting the State: Jurisdictional Authority of the Majlis-e-Mushawarat in Kashmir
—Haley Duschinski and Bruce Hoffman
Chapter 2. "In Search of the Aryan Seed": Race, Religion, and Sexuality in Indian-Occupied Kashmir
Chapter 3. The Killable Kashmiri Body: The Life and Execution of Afzal Guru
Chapter 4. From "Terrorist" to "Terrorized": How Trauma Became the Language of Suffering in Kashmir
Chapter 5. Sexual Crimes and the Struggle for Justice in Kashmir
Chapter 6. Police Subjectivity in Occupied Kashmir: Reflections on an Account of a Police Officer
Chapter 7. The Contingencies of Everyday Life in Azad Jammu and Kashmir
Chapter 8. Interrogating the Ordinary: Everyday Politics and the Struggle for Azadi in Kashmir
Chapter 9. Epitaphs as Counterhistories: Martyrdom, Commemoration, and the Work of Graveyards in Kashmir
Chapter 10. Perturbations of Violence in Kashmir
List of Contributors
"At last anthropology comes to Kashmir. And its entry is dazzling. Each of the essays in this volume takes us in directions never traversed before in any book on Kashmir."—Mridu Rai, Presidency University, Kolkata
"With its grounding in long-term fieldwork, willingness to engage with Kashmiris as expert interpreters of their own historical experiences and political conditions, and comparison of a multiplicity of Kashmiri communities, Resisting Occupation in Kashmir makes a unique contribution."—Cabeiri Robinson, University of Washington