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Jo Laycock and Francesca Piana

Recognising humanitarianism: Armenia and the Aurora Prize In April 2016, one year after the centennial of the Armenian Genocide, the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity was inaugurated in Yerevan, capital of the Republic of Armenia. Initiated by Armenian-American and Russian philanthropists Vartan Gregorian, Noubar Afeyan and Ruben Vardanyan, the prize recognises ‘any individual or group that commits an extraordinary act of humanity’. 1 The first prize was awarded to Marguerite Barankitse for her long-term engagement in saving, sheltering and educating

in Aid to Armenia
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Silvia Salvatici

ground to bring the operation to an end had become the subject of tense debate between the Western allies. Kouchner’s words attracted immediate public attention not only because intervention on the ground was a controversial question but also because the then French health secretary had been one of the best-known (and most controversial) figures in international humanitarianism since he had taken part, in the early 1970s, in the foundation of Médecins Sans Frontières. So his statements in favour of an intensification of the military commitment in Kosovo immediately

in A history of humanitarianism, 1755–1989
International intervention and the failure of the West
Author: Philip Cunliffe

Liberal cosmopolitanism promised a humane and progressive vision of global reform and improvement, in contrast to the terrible utopian projects of the twentieth century. Yet the efforts to globalise human rights and democracy through force have subverted the liberal international order and produced a new type of cosmopolitan dystopia, in the form of permanent war, jihadist insurrection and a new paternalism embodied in transnational protectorates and the paradigm of ‘sovereignty as responsibility’. Cosmopolitan Dystopia explains how this came about through the rise of humanitarian exceptionalism. The book argues that humanitarian exceptionalism saw humanitarian emergencies as opportunities to develop deeper forms of human solidarity that went beyond nation states, thereby necessitating military responses to each new crisis. This in turn helped to normalise permanent war. As the norm and exception have collapsed into each other, the rules-based order envisioned in traditional liberal internationalism has corroded away. Efforts to embed humanitarian exceptionalism into the international order have undermined the classical liberal ideal of self-determination, with the spread of protectorates and a new paternalist legitimisation of state power in the ‘sovereignty as responsibility’ paradigm.

Davide Rodogno

The kind of humanitarianism I know something about is western humanitarianism, which emerged in the late eighteenth century in forms that are familiar or still recognisable in 2019. 1 This kind of humanitarianism is definitely a permanent feature of international relations as we know them. It is as trivial as it is true to say that humanitarianism is not easily defined. Humanitarianism can be substantial, liquid or volatile, can be evasive and pervasive, everywhere and nowhere to be seen; it often is insatiable, and its impacts intangible. Can we really tell

in The Red Cross Movement
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Genealogies of Shiʿa humanitarianism in Pakistan, England, and Iraq
Till Mostowlansky

Starting with the seminal work of Carl Schmitt (1985[ 1922 ]), scholars of political theology have always been interested in the examination of the religious roots of modern secular formations. 1 For instance, most recently, Wydra ( 2015 ) argues that ‘transcendence’ has had a continuous historical presence in political processes up to the present day. Applying this observation to the study of humanitarian reason, Fassin ( 2012 ) frames humanitarianism as a political theology that is historically rooted in Christianity. He situates his argument in a

in Political theologies and development in Asia
Three centuries of Anglophone humanitarianism, empire and transnationalism
Trevor Burnard, Joy Damousi, and Alan Lester

concern for the welfare of others that has come to be known as humanitarianism. 3 In particular, they point to the earliest manifestation of humanitarian intervention, when one state acts, sometimes employing the military, against others in the interests of foreign subjects’ welfare. The instance they have in mind was the operation of the Royal Navy’s West Africa squadron antislavery patrols against other nations’ slave ships. While the

in Humanitarianism, empire and transnationalism, 1760–1995
Continuities, changes and challenges
Neville Wylie, Melanie Oppenheimer, and James Crossland

does its approach to humanitarian affairs. Its stated mission is to ‘alleviate human suffering, protect life and health, and uphold human dignity, especially during armed conflicts and other emergencies’. 2 Grounding its actions on seven fundamental principles, the Red Cross has historically depicted its activities as a specific form of charity through humanitarianism, extending, as Jean Pictet, the author of the principles suggested, ‘its merciful action to the whole of humanity’. 3 Furthermore, its interventions are governed by the principle of neutrality. This

in The Red Cross Movement
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Eric James and Tim Jacoby

Humanitarianism and war in Afghanistan On 4 June 2004, five staff members of the international NGO, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), were murdered in northwest Afghanistan. Within a month, the organization had withdrawn after more than two decades of providing assistance to the country. According to a senior MSF

in The military-humanitarian complex in Afghanistan

This book collects eleven original essays in the cultural history of the British Empire since the eighteenth century. It is geographically capacious, taking in the United Kingdom, India, West Africa, Hong Kong, and Australia, as well as sites of informal British influence such as the Ottoman Empire and southern China.

The book considers the ways in which British culture circulated within what John Darwin has called the British “world system”. In this, the book builds on existing imperial scholarship while innovating in several ways: it focuses on the movement of ideas and cultural praxis, whereas Darwin has focused mostly on imperial structures —financial, demographic, and military. The book examines the transmission, reception, and adaptation of British culture in the Metropole, the empire and informal colonial spaces, whereas many recent scholars have considered British imperial influence on the Metropole alone. It examines Britain's Atlantic and Asian imperial experiences from the eighteenth to the twentieth century together.

Through focusing on political ideology, literary movements, material culture, marriage, and the construction of national identities, the essays demonstrate the salience of culture in making a “British World”.

This book is the fruit of twenty years’ reflection on Islamic charities, both in practical terms and as a key to understand the crisis in contemporary Islam. On the one hand Islam is undervalued as a global moral and political force whose admirable qualities are exemplified in its strong tradition of charitable giving. On the other hand, it suffers from a crisis of authority that cannot be blamed entirely on the history of colonialism and stigmatization to which Muslims have undoubtedly been subjected – most recently, as a result of the "war on terror". The book consists of seventeen previously published chapters, with a general Introduction and new prefatory material for each chapter. The first nine chapters review the current situation of Islamic charities from many different viewpoints – theological, historical, diplomatic, legal, sociological and ethnographic – with first-hand data from the United States, Britain, Israel–Palestine, Mali and Indonesia. Chapters 10 to 17 expand the coverage to explore the potential for a twenty-first century "Islamic humanism" that would be devised by Muslims in the light of the human sciences and institutionalized throughout the Muslim world. This means addressing contentious topics such as religious toleration and the meaning of jihad. The intended readership includes academics and students at all levels, professionals concerned with aid and development, and all who have an interest in the future of Islam.