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TORTURE AS PUBLIC TRUTH: The Case of Omar Khadr
by Sherene Razack, Phd.
[free lecture followed by a Q&A]
In this lecture, focusing on the torture of Omar Khadr, Sherene Razack will explore how torture comes to be a public truth in democratic regimes. How is torture written on the social body? How does a practice that is so extreme come to be seen as a necessary part of our everyday world, a world in which even the spanking of children is regarded as grievous harm? She suggests that torture as practiced today by liberal democratic states in the West (often aided by elites in the East) unites the West against the East, turning the globe into a militarized zone. Torture is thus a racial practice that gives birth to white identities, identities experienced as simultaneously racial and national. As the story of the torture of Muslims circulates in the West, energizing some citizens and providing them with a heightened sense of their own racial superiority, it performs a psychic violence on those of us too easily racially identified with the tortured, reminding us of our own precarious status in political community.
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Thursday, November 22
Lash Miller, Rm 162
(80 St. George St.)
Refreshments and food will be served.
ASL interpreters available.
Venue is wheelchair accessible.
Gender neutral washrooms also available.
BIO: Sherene Razack is a full professor at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto. She has published (2011, co-editor with Malinda Smith and Sunera Thobani) States of Race; (2008) Casting Out: Race and the Eviction of Muslims From Western Law and Politics; (2004) Dark Threats and White Knights: The Somalia Affair, Peacekeeping and the New Imperialism. (2002, Editor) Race, Space and the Law: Unmapping a white settler society. Toronto: Between the Lines;(1998) Looking white people in the eye: gender, race and culture in courtrooms and classrooms; (1991) Canadian feminism and the law: The women’s legal education and action fund and the pursuit of equality.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.