PEACEMED: Mediterranean Cities in Conflict: Urban Wars, Inter-Ethnic Coalitions and the Prospects for Peaceful Coexistence in Lebanon and Israel/Palestine, 1918 to the present

December, 2011 to November, 2014
EU FP7 - ERC Advanced Grant

This research aims at mapping inter-ethnic relations in contested cities in the Eastern Mediterranean by comparing urban dynamics in Lebanon, Israel and Palestine. While most of the geopolitical scholarship on ethnonational conflicts in the region has focused on the territorial struggles between rival nation-states and other regional actors, this project proposes a historical anthropology of intra-urban borderlands consisting of ethnic groups sharing the same city. Political adversaries, Lebanon and Israel share nevertheless a fundamental commonality: they both politicized the Ottoman legacy of communal autonomy and religious sectarianism. Rescaling ethnic conflicts from the regional to the urban arena, this project proposes a bottom up analysis of the political mobilization of territoriality, identity, religion and nation.