Paul Amar will discuss his book The Security Archipelago, winner of the 2014 Charles Taylor Book Award of the American Political Science Association. The book provides an alternative historical and theoretical framing of the refashioning of free-market states and the rise of humanitarian security regimes in the Global South by examining the pivotal, trendsetting cases of Brazil and Egypt. Addressing gaps in the study of neoliberalism and biopolitics, Amar describes how coercive security operations and cultural rescue campaigns confronting waves of resistance have appropriated progressive, antimarket discourses around morality, sexuality, and labor. Homing in on Cairo and Rio de Janeiro, Amar reveals the innovative resistances and unexpected alliances that have coalesced in new polities emerging from the Arab Spring and South America's Pink Tide. These have generated a shared modern governance model that he terms the "human-security state."
Paul Amar, Associate Professor in the Global & International Studies Program, is a political scientist with affiliate appointments in Feminist Studies, Sociology, Comparative Literature, Middle East Studies, and Latin American & Iberian Studies. At UCSB he currently serves as Chair of Middle East Studies, Coordinator of the Campus Cluster on Security Studies, and member of the Graduate Studies Council. In addition, he serves as coordinator of scholarly projects for the Arab Council of the Social Sciences, based in Beirut. Before he began his academic career, he worked as a journalist in Egypt, a police reformer in Brazil, and as a conflict-resolution and economic development specialist at the United Nations. His books include: Cairo Cosmopolitan (2006); New Racial Missions of Policing (2010); Global South to the Rescue (2011); Dispatches from the Arab Spring (2013); The Middle East and Brazil (2014), and The Security Archipelago: Human-Security States, Sexuality Politics and the End of Neoliberalism. This most recent book was awarded the Charles Taylor Award for "Best Book of the Year" in 2014 by the Interpretive Methods Section of the American Political Science Association.