the fire these times

80/ Syria, State Ideology and Climate Politics (With Marwa Daoudy)

This is a conversation with professor Marwa Daoudy, associate professor at Georgetown University and the author of the recently published book The Origins of the Syrian Conflict: Climate Change and Human Security.

Topics Discussed:

  • Climate change did not cause the Syrian revolution, despite this narrative continuing to dominate in many circles, and why this deterministic narrative strips away the agency of Syrian revolutionaries
  • The ‘securitization’ of language, how refugees and migrants going to global north countries are treated through militarized language, and how calling them ‘climate migrants’ can be problematic
  • How did the pre-2011 drought affect the uprising, if at all?
  • Bashar Al-Assad urban/rural divide and conquer strategy
  • Assad’s neoliberal reforms and their impacts on water and food politics
  • The role of ideology (baathism, neoliberalism etc) in Syria
  • The issue of ‘state security’ rhetoric and how a Human-Environmental-Climate Security (HECS) framework can help understand reality better
  • The relationship between the World Bank and the Syrian regime
  • Neo-Malthusian politics and its presence in international politics
  • Europe’s extractivist economies and the complicity in scapegoating ‘climate migrants’
  • The idea of ‘climate security’ and why it’s problematic

Book Recommendations:

  • Steppenwolf by Herman Hesse
  • Martin Eden by Jack London
  • The Crossing by Samar Yazbeck
  • The Impossible Revolution by Yassin Haj-Saleh
  • The Shell by Mustafa Khalifa

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Music by Tarabeat.

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