Harvard Educational Review
  1. Fall 2022 Issue »

    An (A)Political Education?

    UNRWA, Humanitarian Governance, and Education for Palestinian Refugees During the First Intifada (1987–1993)

    Jo Kelcey
    For millions of people living in humanitarian crisis, education can confer physical and psychological protection and offer a path to a brighter future. Overshadowing this promise, however, are the unavoidable politics of humanitarianism. In this historical case study of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East during the First Intifada (1987–1993), Jo Kelcey shows how the agency’s ostensibly apolitical humanitarian education program was in fact shaped by competing political interests. This case highlights both the impossibility of apolitical education programs and the unforeseen consequences of humanitarian framings for education, ultimately underscoring the need to critically reflect on the value of aligning education to humanitarian discourse and practice.

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    Jo Kelcey is a post-doctoral researcher and part time instructor in the Department of Social and Education Sciences at the Lebanese American University in Beirut. Her research is concerned with the ways in which globalization, and in particular, international aid paradigms influence education policies and programs, and how this shapes education outcomes for vulnerable children and youth. Her dissertation explored the history of education for Palestinian refugees registered with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and considered the relevance of this case for contemporary education programs. Prior to her doctoral studies, Jo worked for 15 years on education programs for different aid agencies.
  2. Fall 2022 Issue


    A Face for My Autobiography
    Lucy Grealy and Embodied Vulnerability
    Andrea Avery

    Book Notes

    The Doctoral Journey as an Emotional, Embodied, Political Experience
    Edited by Rebecca (Bex) Twinley and Gayle Letherby

    Memory in the Mekong
    Edited by Will Brehm and Yuto Kitamura

    Willful Defiance
    Mark R. Warren

    Queer Data
    Kevin Guyan

    All the White Friends I Couldn’t Keep
    Andre Henry