Current Institutional Affiliation
Associate Professor, Interdisciplinary Studies, Western Washington University

Award Information

International Dissertation Research Fellowship 1997
Institutional Affiliation (at time of award):
Political Science, University of Washington
Labor, the State, and Ethnic Conflict: A Comparative Study of British Rule in Palestine (1920--1939) and Northern Ireland (1972--1994)

This research will explain Britain's failure to control the communal conflicts in Palestine and Northern Ireland by studying how imperial states are manipulated by colonial actors with superior local knowledge. I hypothesize that Britain became dependent on organized settlers for inputs of capital (taxation paid by Jewish settlers in Palestine) or coercion (Protestant volunteers for security force jobs in Northern Ireland), and was thus precluded from effectively co-opting the support of native elites in each case. I will research the Palestine mandate using British and Israeli archives: Treasury, Cabinet, Colonial Office files, personal papers, Palestine Government papers, and Zionist correspondence. I expect to find that fiscal constraints imposed by the Treasury forced the Palestine government to rely on the Zionists, perhaps against the officials on the ground. My research on Northern Ireland will use budgets, employment, and police statistics to examine how Britain was forced by Unionist pressure to coerce the catholic population. I will also use U.S. State Department files on Britain and Ireland in the 1960s and early 1970s.