A postcolonial history of accumulation by contamination in the Gulf

Michael Hennessy Picard*, Tina Beigi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract / Description of output

Since the discovery of oil in the Gulf, the military-industrial complex has expanded the scale and scope of capital accumulation. Often overlooked, the corollary to capital accumulation is contamination of human ecology, cannibalizing the daily lives of many people having to live in the rubble of war and the spills of oil. Over the course of a century, surveillance from above and extraction down below fueled successive rounds of oil wars. Militarized for the purpose of extraction, the oil states of the Gulf have become wastelands littered by chemically contaminated waters, and massive oil spills. The Gulf’s history of war making and oil drilling constitutes an exemplary case study of “accumulation by contamination”, by which sophisticated techniques of contamination enabled successive rounds of expropriation and capital accumulation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnforcing Ecocide
Subtitle of host publicationPower, Policing & Planetary Militarization
EditorsAlexander Dunlap, Andrea Brock
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9783030996468
ISBN (Print)9783030996451
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • history
  • war
  • oil
  • pollution
  • Gulf
  • Ecomarxism


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