Palestine Is Throwing a Party and the Whole World Is Invited

Capital and State Building in the West Bank

Palestine Is Throwing a Party and the Whole World Is Invited

Book Pages: 272 Illustrations: 31 illustrations Published: April 2021

Author: Kareem Rabie

Anthropology > Cultural Anthropology, Globalization and Neoliberalism, Middle East Studies

In 2008, Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad invited international investors to the first-ever Palestine Investment Conference, which was designed to jump-start the process of integrating Palestine into the global economy. As Fayyad described the conference, Palestine is “throwing a party, and the whole world is invited.” In this book Kareem Rabie examines how the conference and Fayyad's rhetoric represented a wider shift in economic and political practice in ways that oriented state-scale Palestinian politics toward neoliberal globalization rather than a diplomatic two-state solution. Rabie demonstrates that private firms, international aid organizations, and the Palestinian government in the West Bank focused on large-scale private housing development in an effort toward state-scale economic stability and market building. This approach reflected the belief that a thriving private economy would lead to a free and functioning Palestinian state. Yet, as Rabie contends, these investment-based policies have maintained the status quo of occupation and Palestine's subordinate and suspended political and economic relationship with Israel.


Palestine Is Throwing a Party is a brilliant, carefully researched, and thoughtful book. Kareem Rabie uses the lens of urban planning and development to show us how global processes of unequal capital accumulation, racialized labor and property regimes within Israel/Palestine, and the managerial rule of Palestinian technocrats and capitalists collaborating with Israel all persistently reproduce the violent systems of settlercolonial expropriation in Israel/Palestine since 1948.” — Laleh Khalili, author of Sinews of War and Trade: Shipping and Capitalism in the Arabian Peninsula

“Drawing on his exceptional knowledge and understanding of Palestine along with a considerable amount of original, innovative, and detailed fieldwork, Kareem Rabie presents thought-provoking insights on the question of urbanism in Palestine. This extremely interesting study makes an important contribution.” — Adam Hanieh, author of Money, Markets, and Monarchies: The Gulf Cooperation Council and the Political Economy of the Contemporary Middle East


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Author/Editor Bios Back to Top

Kareem Rabie is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at American University.

Table of Contents Back to Top
1. The Site
2. Developers and Designers
3. Image, Process, and Precedent
4. Public Urban Planning
5. Housing Shortage and National Priority
6. Public-Private Partnership
7. Buyers and Villagers
8. Critique, Capital, and the Landscape
9. Settlers and the Land
10. The Law, Mirroring, and the State
Sales/Territorial Rights: World

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Additional InformationBack to Top
Paper ISBN: 978-1-4780-1409-6 / Cloth ISBN: 978-1-4780-1195-8