Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry

, Volume 28, Issue 2, pp 127–149 | Cite as

The Political Economy of ‘Trauma’ in Haiti in the Democratic Era of Insecurity

  • Erica Caple James

Abstract

This article explores the challenges that emerge at the intersection of economies of compassion and terror: local, national, and international forms of humanitarian assistance; security practices in insecure social and institutional environments; questions of victimization and global reparations; and quests for justice, as revealed through an analysis of political violence and humanitarian interventions in Haiti during and after the 1991–94 coup period. Each domain is constrained by politics and history but can engender “occult economies” that challenge the intended consequences of restitution policies at international, national, and local levels of exchange. ‘Trauma’ and discourses about traumatic suffering are the hinge around which these economies pivot, generating new forms of political subjectivity for Haitian activists.

bio-politics Haiti humanitarian assistance trauma violence 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Allen, Irving M. 1996 PTSD Among African Americans. In Ethnocultural Aspects of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: Issues, Research, and Clinical Applications. Anthony J. Marsella, Matthew J. Friedman, Ellen T. Gerrity, and Raymond M. Scurfield, eds., pp. 209-238. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
  2. Aretxaga, Begoña 1997 Shattering Silence: Women, Nationalism, and Political Subjectivity in Northern Ireland. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Boltanski, Luc 1999[1993] Distant Suffering: Morality, Media and Politics. Graham Burchell, trans. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Bracken, Patrick J., and Celia Petty, eds. 1998 Rethinking the Trauma of War. London and New York: Free Association Books.Google Scholar
  5. Brown, Wendy 1995 States of Injury: Power and Freedom in Late Modernity. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  6. Cahill, Kevin M., ed. 2003 Traditions, Values, and Humanitarian Action. New York: Fordham University Press and the Center for International Health and Cooperation.Google Scholar
  7. Cartwright, Samuel A. 1851 Report on the Diseases and Physical Peculiarities of the Negro Race. Part One. The New Orleans Medical and Surgical Journal 7(May): 691-715.Google Scholar
  8. Central Intelligence Agency 2004 The World Fact Book [Electronic document]. Retrieved March 18, 2004, from http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/ha.html#People.Google Scholar
  9. Craige, John H. 1933 Black Bagdad. New York: Minton, Balch and Company.Google Scholar
  10. Craige, John H.1934Cannibal Cousins. New York: Minton, Balch and Company.Google Scholar
  11. Das, Veena 1995 Critical Events: An Anthropological Perspective on Contemporary India. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Das, Veena, and Ashis Nandy 1985 Violence, Victimhood, and the Language of Silence. Contribution to Indian Sociology 19(1): 177-195.Google Scholar
  13. Dash, J. Michael 1997 Haiti and the United States: Stereotypes and the Literary Imagination,2nd edn. New York: St. Martin's Press.Google Scholar
  14. DeConde, Alexander 1992 Ethnicity, Race, and American Foreign Policy. Boston: Northeastern University Press.Google Scholar
  15. Deleuze, Gilles 1988 Foucault. Seán Hand, trans. Minneapolis: The University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  16. Dubuche, Georges 2002 Report on the MSH/HS-2004 project. Talk delivered at Management Sciences for Health headquarters, Boston, MA, May 22.Google Scholar
  17. Farmer, Paul 1992 AIDS and Accusation: Haiti and the Geography of Blame. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  18. Fisher, William F. 1997 Doing Good? The Politics and Antipolitics of NGO Practices. Annual Review of Anthropology 26: 439-464.Google Scholar
  19. Foucault, Michel 1990[1978] The History of Sexuality, Vol. 1: An Introduction. Robert Hurley, trans. Vintage Books edition. New York: Random House.Google Scholar
  20. Foucault, Michel1991Governmentality. In The Foucault Effect: Studies in Governmentality. Graham Burchell, Colin Gordon, and Peter Miller eds., pp. 87-104. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  21. Foucault, Michel1997Ethics: Subjectivity and Truth. Essential Works of Foucault 1954–1984, Vol. 1. Paul Rabinow, ed. Robert Hurley and others, trans. New York: The New Press.Google Scholar
  22. Fraser, Nancy 1995From Redistribution to Recognition? Dilemmas of Justice in a ‘Post-Socialist’ Age. New Left Review 212: 68-93.Google Scholar
  23. Freud, Sigmund 1997[1927] Fetishism. In Sexuality and the Psychology of Love. New York: Simon and Schuster.Google Scholar
  24. Girard, René 1977[1972] Violence and the Sacred. Patrick Gregory, trans. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  25. Gobineau, Arthur, comte de 1999 The Inequality of Human Races. Adrian Collins, trans. New York: Howard Fertig, Inc.Google Scholar
  26. Godelier, Maurice 1999[1996] The Enigma of the Gift. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  27. Harvey, David 1990 The Condition of Postmodernity: An Enquiry Into the Origins of Cultural Change. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  28. Hayner, Priscilla B. 2001 Unspeakable Truths: Confronting State Terror and Atrocity: How Truth Commissions Around the World Are Challenging the Past and Shaping the Future. New York and London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  29. James, Erica Caple 2003 The Violence of Misery: “Insecurity” in Haiti in the “Democratic” Era. Unpublished dissertation, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University.Google Scholar
  30. James, Erica Caple Forthcoming Haunting Ghosts: Madness, Gender and Ensekirite in Haiti in the Democratic Era. In Postcolonial Disorders. Sandra Hyde and Mary-Jo DelVecchio Good,eds.Google Scholar
  31. Jameson, Frederic 1991 Postmodernism, or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism. Durham: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  32. Jordan, Winthrop 1968 White Over Black: American Attitudes Toward the Negro: 1550–1812. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  33. Kleinman, Arthur 1995 Writing at the Margin: Discourse Between Anthropology and Medicine. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  34. Kleinman, Arthur, and Joan Kleinman 1991 Suffering and Its Professional Transformation: Toward an Ethnography of Interpersonal Experience. Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry 15(3): 275-301.Google Scholar
  35. Lawyers Committee for Human Rights 1990 Refugee Refoulement: The Forced Return of Haitians Under the U.S.-Haitian Interdiction Agreement. New York: Lawyers Committee for Human Rights.Google Scholar
  36. LeBon, Gustave 1974 The Psychology of Peoples. New York: Arno Press.Google Scholar
  37. Lyotard, Jean-François 1984[1979] The Postmodern Condition: A Report on Knowledge. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  38. Mauss, Marcel 1950 The Gift: The Form and Reason for Exchange in Archaic Societies. W.D. Halls, trans. New York and London: W.W. Norton.Google Scholar
  39. Miller, Jake C. 1984 The Plight of Haitian Refugees. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  40. Nussbaum, Martha C. 2003 Compassion and Terror. Daedalus 132(1): 10-26.Google Scholar
  41. Pandolfi, Mariella 2000 Une souvereigneté mouvante et supracoloniale. Multitudes 3 [Electronic docu-ment].Available from http://multitudes.samizdat.net/article.php3?id_article=182.Google Scholar
  42. Patterson, Orlando 1982 Slavery and Social Death: A Comparative Study. Cambridge, MA and London: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  43. Petryna, Adriana 2002 Life Exposed: Biological Citizens after Chernobyl. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  44. Plummer, Brenda Gayle 1992 Haiti and the United States: The Psychological Moment. Athens, GA: The University of Georgia Press.Google Scholar
  45. Povinelli, Elizabeth A. 2002 The Cunning of Recognition: Indigenous Alterity and the Making of Australian Multiculturalism. Durham and London: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  46. Renda, Mary A. 2001 Taking Haiti: Military Occupation and the Culture of U.S. Imperialism, 1915–1940. Chapel Hill and London: The University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  47. Rieff, David 2002 A Bed for the Night: Humanitarianism in Crisis. New York: Simon and Schuster.Google Scholar
  48. Rothschild, Emma 1995 What is Security? Daedalus 124(3): 53-98.Google Scholar
  49. Sabatier, Renée 1988 Blaming Others: Prejudice, Race and Worldwide AIDS. Philadelphia: The Panos Institute and New Society Publishers.Google Scholar
  50. Scarry, Elaine 1985 The Body in Pain: The Making and Unmaking of the World. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  51. Taussig, Michael 1992 The Nervous System. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  52. Taylor, Charles 1994 The Politics of Recognition. In Multiculturalism: Examining the Politics of Recognition. Amy Gutmann, ed., pp. 25-73. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  53. Terry, Fiona 2002 Condemned to Repeat: The Paradox of Humanitarian Action. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  54. United Nations Development Program (UNDP) 1994 Human Development Report 1994. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  55. United Nations Development Program (UNDP)2000 Human Development Report 2000. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  56. United States Congress 1999a United States Policy Toward Victims of Torture. Hearing Before the Subcommittee on International Operations and Human Rights of the Committee on International Relations, House of Representatives. 106th Congress, First Session, June 29, 1999.Google Scholar
  57. United States Congress1999b U.S. Policy Toward Victims of Torture. Hearing before the Subcommittee on International Operations of the Committee on Foreign Relations, United States Senate. 106th Congress, First Session, July 30, 1999.Google Scholar
  58. United States Embassy (Haiti) 1994 Haiti Human Rights Report. Unpublished U.S. State Department memorandum.Google Scholar
  59. Weldes, Jutta, Mark Laffey, Hugh Gusterson, and Raymond Duvall 1999 Introduction. In Cultures of Insecurity: States, Communities, and the Production of Danger. Jutta Weldes, Mark Laffey, Hugh Gusterson, and Raymond Duvall, eds., pp. 1-33. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  60. World Bank 2001 World Development Report 2000/2001: Attacking Poverty. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  61. Young, Allan 1995 The Harmony of Illusions: Inventing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erica Caple James
    • 1
  1. 1.Anthropology ProgramMassachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA

Personalised recommendations