Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Laws (LLM)

First Advisor

Jennifer Nadler


This thesis attempts to demonstrate that the international legal impasse surrounding Palestine is animated by incommensurable visions of legality. It argues that in portraying the Palestinian struggle for liberation as a struggle for state sovereignty, international law subjects the indigenous worldview to a violent and perpetual erasure. The thesis employs Aaron Mills' theoretical framework to argue for an incommensurability between Palestine's indigenous conception of legality and the dominant conception of legality underlying international law. Further, the thesis offers a reading of Ghassan Kanafani's novel The Other Thing to explore the consequences and normative implications of an impasse characterized by incommensurability. The key finding is that cultural artefacts are important sites of the Palestinian legal memory and are capable of uncovering Palestine's silenced vision of legality. Finally, the paper concludes that acknowledging incommensurability paves a way towards a more holistic legal imagination that contains the seeds of transcending the impasse in indigenous Palestine.


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