chapter  15
Libya’s ‘Black’ Market Diplomacies: Opacity and Entanglement in the Face of Hope and Horror
BySam Okoth Opondo
Pages 8

ABSTRACT In this essay, I explore some of the values, exchanges and economies (moral, political

and libidinal) characteristic of everyday life and official diplomacies in Libya. Through a

consideration of multiple sites of estrangement and their related mediation practice, the essay

engages the moral alibis, entangled yet unacknowledged relations, ontological commitments and

duplicitous exchanges that made ‘Gaddafi’s Libya’ possible. By patiently engaging the morally

ambiguous mediation practices, violence and the bodies in pain that are erased by recognizable

diplomatic regimes and discourses, I interrogate both the habitual ways of thinking about and

relating to Libya and the uncritical exuberance that marks the celebration of the insurrectional

present. Such a diplomatic rendition of the situation in Libya raises the ethical and political

stakes of our analyses of the uprising by illustrating that there is more going on in this place than

the Pan-African, Orientalist and humanitarian reductionisms tell us.