“[Afghanistan] as Method”: A Contrapuntal Reading of Violence and Knowledge


Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Innovation Fellowships


Public Affairs


What is the relationship between knowledge and violence in the context of international interventions? In what ways do knowledge practices work to enable, obscure, and disavow operations of violence? How else can we tell war stories while corresponding with the experiences, subjectivities, and agencies of those living in the midst of violence? To address these questions, this dissertation traces the ways literary and artistic prose challenge privileged forms of knowledge in response to lived experiences of violence. Reading violence from the standpoint of Afghan subjectivities offers significant potential for rethinking our conceptions of violence by highlighting ways of knowing-being often exiled from western episteme.