- Julio Moreno Cirujano
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- Thesis title:
- Looking like a state: Materiality and Aesthetics in British Mandate Palestine
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My research focuses on the manner in which Palestine was embodied and represented in multiple state-building projects during the Interwar Era. In the “age of mechanical reproduction”, post stamps, currency, uniforms, flags, passports, an other symbols of sovereignty became the tactile form of a new political order: the nation-state.
On the one hand, I trace the British inconsistencies of symbolically producing but actually preventing a state in Palestine, which echoes the tension between its integration within the empire and the attempts to capitalise on its singularity as the ‘Holy Land’. On the other, these objects of power were adopted and adapted by the Zionist movement and the Arab population, showing not only their divergent aspirations to sovereignty, but the increasing importance of modernising aesthetics and materiality as political languages.