MOVED to Session 157: The Impact of the Mandate System on the MENA Region: History and Historiography of a Controversial International Administration Regime

Friday, January 3, 2014: 2:50 PM
Washington Room 4 (Marriott Wardman Park)
Hussein D. Alkhazragi, Université de Genève
The mandate system of the League of Nations inspires a growing body of literature. The histories of international organizations in general, and the Middle East in particular, are benefiting from recent research on this subject.  However, the impact of the mandate system in the MENA region is often studied either from the viewpoint of international organizations or from a national or local perspective. The object of this paper is to understand the impact of the mandate system on a global scale and to apprehend its effects both on the history of international organizations as well as on the history of the Middle-East. 

The first part of this paper will analyze the historiography of the mandate system and the way this international administrative regime has been perceived by western scholars as well as by Middle-Eastern historians. I will argue in this part that this system cannot be totally assimilated to colonialism as has been argued.

The second part will assess the consequences of the establishment of this system on the international relations of the Middle-East by taking also into account territories which were not subject to the mandate regime, such as Egypt. I will argue that the mandate regime has had a very strong effect in term of integration towards the values supported by the League of Nations.

Finally, I will propose in the last part a new interpretation of the mandate system's significance in the region, which could help scholars to grasp more efficiently the structural effects brought by this regime in the MENA region.