South Asia Institute
South Asia Institute

Barbara Harlow

ProfessorPh.D., 1977, SUNY- Buffalo

Barbara Harlow



College: Liberal Arts

Home Department: English

Additional department affiliations: Middle Eastern Studies

Education: Ph.D., State University of New York at Buffalo

Research interests:
Third world studies; critical theory; prison and resistance writings and postcolonial studies (particularly Anglophone African and modern Arabic literatures and cultures)


UGS 302 • Humanitarian Aid Workers-W

64620 • Fall 2009
Meets TTH 1100-1230pm MAI 220C


Barbara Harlow  /  Fall 2009  /  T/Th 11-12.30
Office Hours: M 1-3 (Rapoport Center, Law School), T 12.30-2/Th 12.30-1.30 (Parlin 26) and by appointment


“Responsibility to protect” (or R2P) is yet another formulation for “humanitarian interventionism.” What difference does it make? Our readings of the personal accounts of aid workers and advocates will attempt to address some of the challenges, crises, contradictions, recriminations – and rewards – entailed by the “responsibility to protect.”

Selected readings include:

  • Another Day in Paradise: Front Line Stories from International Aid Workers
  • Mahvish Rukhsana Khan. My Guantanamo Diary: The Detainees and the Stories They Told Me (translator)
  • Jonny Steinberg. Sizwe’s Test: A Young Man’s Journey Through Africa’s AIDS Epidemic (journalist)
  • Kenneth Cain, Heidi Postlewait, Andrew Thomson. Emergency Sex and Other Desperate Measures (UN aid workers)
  • David Kennedy. The Dark Sides of Virtue: Reassessing International Humanitarianism (law professor)
  • Clea Koff. The Bone Woman (forensic anthropologist)

For more information, please download the full syllabus.

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