Category Archives: empire, imperialism & colonialism

Interstitial Podcast

I spoke with the brilliant David Huber of the Interstitial podcast, which you can listen to here: https://thinkbelt.org/shows/interstitial/sinews-of-war-and-trade-laleh-khalili He asked me to suggest 4 books and I had to think on my feet, so of course I suggested the following: … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, empire, imperialism & colonialism, labour, literature, Middle East, political economy, ports, seafaring, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

BBC 3 Free Thinking interview with Matthew Sweet

Matthew Sweet of BBC Free Thinking was a brilliant reader of the book, having read closely and with an eye for fetching detail. We talked for about half an hour, and the interview can be heard here (my part of … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, empire, imperialism & colonialism, environment, free ports/zones, infrastructure, labour, Middle East, political economy, ports, shipping conditions, transport, Travels, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Publication: A World Built on Sand and Oil

This is probably one of my favourite publications, in part because I was pushed and pushed by Lapham Quarterly‘s superb editors. The essay compares the trade in oil and sand today to think through maritime transportation, the building of infrastructures, the … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, construction, empire, imperialism & colonialism, environment, infrastructure, Middle East, oil, ports, transport, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Publication: The infrastructural power of the military

Drawing on extensive research in the archives of the US Army Corps of Engineers, this article again draws on my concomitant interest in militaries and infrastructure. “The infrastructural power of the military: The geoeconomic role of the US Army Corps … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, construction, empire, empire, imperialism & colonialism, infrastructure, labour, logistics, Middle East, militaries, political economy, transport, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Publication: The Roads to Power: The Infrastructure of Counterinsurgency

It has been years since I posted here, but I am going to quickly provide some links to various publications related to the project here. The first is an article that conjugates my research on transport infrastructures with my counterinsurgency … Continue reading

Posted in construction, empire, empire, imperialism & colonialism, imperialism & colonialism, infrastructure, logistics, militaries, transport, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Domination, Dispossession and Struggle in the Making of Infrastructure and Logistics

Last night (20 February), Deb Cowen (Toronto), Charmaine Chua (Oberlin), Rafeef Ziadah (SOAS) and I had a conversation about the politics of infrastructure and logistics.  Here is the recording for the event:

Posted in capital accumulation, empire, imperialism & colonialism, finance and insurance, infrastructure, logistics, Middle East, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Multivalence of Infrastructures II – Rail

I am reading a fascinating article about colonial engineering. Canay Ozden’s fabulous “Pontifex Minimus” is about the British engineer of the Low (or old) Aswan Dam, and the article just drips with all sorts of wonderful quotable sections.  For example, … Continue reading

Posted in empire, empire, imperialism & colonialism, environment, imperialism & colonialism, infrastructure, Uncategorized, war | Leave a comment

The Multivalence of Infrastructure I – Roads

As always Paul Rabinow’s French Modern is an extraordinary reminder of how transport infrastructures serve functions at once military and commercial – and in fact “war, commerce, and transit” (in Paul Nizan’s memorable phrase) cannot be prised apart. Here is Rabinow … Continue reading

Posted in empire, empire, imperialism & colonialism, imperialism & colonialism, infrastructure, transport, Uncategorized, war | Leave a comment

Machineries of Joy: Wrestling with the technological sublime

This one is for my friends Rachel Shabi and Waleed Hazbun, who might recognise something of the pathos of our common paternal utopias in it… 11 February 2015 “Hyperbole is the main stock in trade of publicists, boosters and even … Continue reading

Posted in Allan Sekula, capital accumulation, empire, imperialism & colonialism, infrastructure, logistics, Middle East, political economy, readings, the sublime, transport, Travels | Leave a comment

About Today: Steaming the security seas

10 February 2015 Everything anticipated our entry into what I can only call security seas. There are ships that do not send signals: they turn out to be warships of a sort, small, compact, going only at 7 knots with … Continue reading

Posted in empire, imperialism & colonialism, militaries, piracy, seafaring, transport, Travels, war | Leave a comment