Practices of Contestation in the Mediterranean Middle East
Resisting Europe analyzes the conceptualization of the foreign policies of Europe—defined as the European Union and its member states—towards the states in its immediate southern “neighborhood” as interest-driven and semi-imperial attempts to turn these states into Europe’s southern buffer zone, or borderlands. In these hybrid spaces, different types of rules and practices coexist and overlap, and negotiations over meaning and implementation take place. This book examines the diverse modalities by which states in the Mediterranean Middle East and North Africa (MENA) reject, resist, challenge, modify or entirely change European policies and preferences and provides rich empirical evidence on these contestation practices in the fields of migration and border control, banking and finance, democracy promotion and telecommunications. It addresses the complex question of when and how MENA states capitalize on their leverage and interdependence in their relationships with Europe, contributes to a more comprehensive understanding of Europe-Middle East relations while engaging with broader debates on power and interdependence, order and contestation in international relations. While a contribution on the practices of resistance and contestation of MENA states vis-à-vis European policies and preferences in this geopolitically significant region was overdue, this volume aims to lead the way for studies to overcome the constraints of exceptionalism so characteristic of studies of the Middle East, Europe/the European Union, and certainly of their relationship.
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