Critique internationale

Revue comparative de sciences sociales

Couverture Critique Internationale

Critique internationale is a quarterly French-language journal published by Presses de Sciences Po, with the help of the Centre national du livre. A peer-reviewed journal, it has been supported by the Centre de recherches internationales (CERI-Sciences Po/CNRS) since its creation in October 1998.

A comparative social sciences journal, Critique internationale aims to shed light on the social sciences of politics from a comparative and empirical perspective. Articles submitted to the journal must therefore be based upon a detailed knowledge of the area(s) studied, acquired by researchers during localized studies and long-term immersion. At the same time, this approach must be accompanied by a solid grounding in the issue of research in social sciences debates.

The editorial committee is made up of individuals specializing in international issues (including transfer of norms, the transnationalization of collective action and public policy, the role of international organizations and NGOs in numerous crises or in the routine life of the “countries of the South,” and migration) in places (other than France) across all five continents. Anthropologists, sociologists, historians, and political scientists, its members come from various institutions (CNRS, IRD, FNSP, EHESS, universities) and vibrant research centers in both France and further afield, where comparative studies and studies on international issues provide a variety of perspectives on the way in which research is conducted today.

At the same time, Critique internationale continues to place particular focus on supporting young researchers in their first publishing and project coordination endeavors, while also ensuring that work produced by foreign colleagues is published in its pages.

Each quarter, a thematic dossier of five or six articles presents several case studies based on a cross-cutting issue. What makes Critique internationale distinctive is that each time, this dossier deals with far removed geographical and cultural entities. Together with the miscellaneous contributions that are published in each issue’s “Varia” section, these thematic studies provide particularly rich material for social scientific comparison. The “Readings” section offers reviews as well as reports on the state of thematic literature, allowing for an assessment of the research in a given field.

The journal accepts articles in English, Spanish, Russian, and German, and provides authors with feedback on their manuscripts in the language in which they submitted them. These manuscripts are then translated into French. Critique internationale also translates articles originally written in French or another language into English. These articles, as well as the entire collection, are available online on the journal portal

ISSN paper 1290-7839

ISSN electronic 1777-554X

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N°80 - Content



No Abstract


Le quotidien économique dans un Proche-Orient en guerre
Edited by Thierry Boissière and Laura Ruiz de Elvira


No Abstract


Entre violence, incertitude et routinisation : réinventer les pratiques économiques quotidiennes en situations de guerre
Thierry Boissière, Laura Ruiz de Elvira


No Abstract


L’expérience économique du gouvernement Hamas sous blocus dans la bande de Gaza
Taher Labadi

[The Economic Experience of the Hamas Government under Blockade in the Gaza Strip]
The blockade of the Gaza Strip and the successive wars conducted by Israel over the course of the past decade have given rise to severe economic and humanitarian crisis in this portion of Palestinian territory. To that is added the context produced by the internal political split between Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip, and the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank. This article examines certain unprecedented practices and policies of the Gaza government under blockade that offer insight in to the eminently conflictual and necessarily precarious nature of efforts to adapt, secure autonomy for and regulate economic activity in wartime. It focuses on three experiences in particular: the efforts undertaken by the Ministry of Agriculture to develop production in a situation of autarchy; recourse to smuggling networks and the use of tunnels at the border with Egypt; the effort to establish a parallel administrative and financial system in a context of shared sovereignty.

Produire, consommer, vivre : les pratiques économiques du quotidien dans la Syrie en guerre (2011-2018)
Leïla Vignal

[Producing, Consuming and Living: Economic Everyday Practices in Wartime Syria (2011-2018)]
Drawing upon the example of Syria in the 2010s, this article seeks to understand the ways in which the economy has been transformed in wartime. In contrast to studies devoted to economies of war, it explores what day-to-day economic conditions – those involved in producing, consuming and living – become in wartime, including contexts characterized by the chaos of destruction, the collapse of collective frameworks and partisan, military and militia dynamics. In order to understand day-to-day economic reproduction in wartime, I identify both innovations in and continuities with the economic practices (predation and self-organization) underway in the context of the prewar authoritarian state. From there, I examine the contracting scales of the Syrian economy by focusing on the case of industrial activity. I then consider the spread of a “passage economy” – that is, a system for producing values established by multiple actors that exploits the fragmentation of space and mobility. Finally, I explore the population’s everyday economic life, which is organized at local but also international scales.

La région libanaise de Wadi Khaled à la frontière avec la Syrie : quelles transformations économiques en temps de paix et de guerre ?
Jamil Mouawad

[Lebanon’s Wadi Khaled on the Border with Syria: Economic Transformations in Times of Peace and War]
This article presents a historical reading of the major transformations of economic life in the Lebanese area of Wadi Khaled on the northern border with Syria in both times of war and peace. It examines these transformations in light of the permanent fluctuation of bordering and re-bordering processes. It shows that the economic livelihood in the Wadi hinged on difference between the Syrian and Lebanese economic systems and the porosity of the border, specifically through trade and smuggling. With eruption of the war in Syria in late 2011, the border gradually closed and became rigid and impermeable. The Wadi dwellers, as a result, lost their major economic income. Conversely, they became reliant Syrian refugees with whom new boundaries were shared, namely that between a host community and refugees. In this way, the article shows how the area shifted from being economically reliant on Syria to dependent on the Syrians who sought refuge in the Wadi Khaled borderland. Therefore, it demonstrates that the area is inextricably entangled with Syria whether the border is porous or not.

Une économie de la survie au plus près de la guerre. Stratégies quotidiennes des réfugiés syriens à Nabaa
Thierry Boissière, Annie Tohmé Tabet

[A Survial Economy in Close Proximity to the War. The Everyday Strategies of Syrian Refugees in Nabaa]
At the junction of urban and economic anthropology, the sociology of migrations and the ethnography of everyday practices, this study presents the first results of ongoing fieldwork. It examines the manner in which Syrian refugees make their way in Nabaa, a working-class neighborhood in the northeastern suburbs of Beirut, and the types of residential and economic arrangements on which they rely on a day-to-day basis. Our analysis takes into consideration the path that led them from Syria to this neighborhood as well as the development of economic and survival activities. Finally, it raises the question of the conditions under which everyday life is constructed in exile, particularly via the establishment of types of routine in a context of uncertainty and great material, social, political and statutory insecurity.

De vive voix
L’abolition de l’esclavage, matrice des mouvements sociaux aux États-Unis
Interview with Manisha Sinha by Nicolas Martin-Breteau


No Abstract


Les convertis évangéliques face à l’islam d’État en Algérie
Fatiha Kaouès

[Evangelical Converts Facing the Challenge of State Islam in Algeria]
In Algeria, Islam is established as the state religion under Article 2 of the Constitution and it is used as an essential source of political legitimacy. In this context, the growing phenomenon of conversion to evangelical Protestantism these last fifteen years has provoked major tensions with the authorities. In 2006, the latter adopted a law that very strictly regulates religions other than Islam and prohibits proselytism. This article seeks to demonstrate that the new Christians have been able to profit from this apparently unfavorable state of affairs to improve their status in Algeria. In particular, they have taken advantage of state criteria of veridiction by playing upon claims to patriotism and making use of transnational religious diplomacy. The article distinguishes between two periods: a period of confrontation from 2004 to 2010 characterized by polemical media coverage and, from 2011, a period of official recognition for the Protestant religion in Algeria that would seem to herald the beginnings of normalization for the Christian presence in the country.

Parrainages régionaux et polarisations belligènes : la rivalité entre l’Iran et l’Arabie saoudite au Liban
Aurélie Daher

[Regional Patronage and War-Fomenting Polarization: The Rivalry between Iran and Saudi Arabia in Lebanon]
The Middle East in the 2010s has witnessed rising tensions between Sunnism and Shiism. In particular, the rivalry opposing Saudi Arabia and Iran was transposed into several countries of the region, dangerously jeopardizing national political and security balances. This study deals with Saudi Arabia and Iran’s respective patronages in Lebanon and their repercussions on the latter’s political class and society. I first argue that, far from being the result of an imposed clientelism, Saudi and Iranian protections were established at the request of interested Lebanese parties and Western powers. I also explain that during the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s, Saudi and Iranian relations with their specific Lebanese protégés were hampered by the veto power of Syria. The Lebanese checks and balances, the relations between Lebanese actors and their regional sponsors, and these mentors’ stance vis-à-vis one another have generated systems of action with polarizing effects on the Lebanese and regional scenes alike. While these varied sorts of transnational clientelism import the region’s bellicose into the Lebanese internal game, highly destabilizing rationalities within the national context, the Lebanese local dynamics and limits reversely impact the foreign sponsors’ own arm wrestling, hence modifying the game’s parameters at the regional and international levels as well.

État de littérature La « normalité de l’anormal » : recomposer le quotidien en situation de guerre civile


No Abstract


Verónica Calvo Valenzuela

Gabriela Zamorano Villarreal, Indigenous Media and Political Imaginaries in Contemporary Bolivia, Lincoln, University of Nebraska Press, 2017, 336 pages.

Sélim Smaoui

Anne-Marie Losonczy, Valérie Robin Azevedo (dir.), Retour des corps, parcours des âmes. Exhumations et deuils collectifs dans le monde hispanophone, Paris, Éditions Petra, 2016, 216 pages.

Brian Chauvel

Jean-François Pérouse, Istanbul planète. La ville-monde du XXIe siècle, Paris, La Découverte, 2017, 220 pages.