New Book Out: Kurdistan in Iraq – The Evolution of a Quasi-State

17 07 2018

Rafaat, Aram

Routledge, 2018

9781351188821

The Kurdish-Iraqi conflict lies in the fact that Kurdistan is a nation-without-a-state and Iraq is a non-nation state, each possessing a nationhood project differing from and opposing the other. Iraqi-Kurdistan is an outward looking entity seeking external patronage. Though external patronage has played a pivotal role in the evolution of the Kurdish quasi-state, a lack of positive patronage has prevented it from achieving independence.

This book looks at how the Kurdish and Iraqi quests for nationhood have led to the transformation of Iraqi Kurdistan into an unrecognised quasi-state, and the devolution of the Iraqi state into a recognised quasi-state. This is done by examining the protracted Iraqi-Kurdish conflict and by analysing the contradictions and incompatibilities between the two different nationalisms: Iraqi and Kurdish. The author explains that Kurds as a nation without a state have their own nationhood project which is in opposition to the Iraqi nationhood project. Each has its own identity, loyalty and sovereignty. The book answers the question as to how the Kurdish quest for nationhood has been treated by successive Iraqi regimes. Furthermore, it fills in the literary gaps which exist in relation to the Iraqi-Kurdish conflict by specifying and categorising the cardinal conditions that drive ethnic and nationalist conflicts which lead to the creation of separatist entities.

Drawing upon a vast amount of untapped Kurdish and Arabic primary sources, the book draws on prominent theories on nation-states and quasi-states. It will particularly appeal to students and scholars of international relations, political theory and Middle Eastern Studies.

For details click here.

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Call for Abstracts: International Kurdish Studies Symposium – Kurds, Displacement and Resilience

13 07 2018

International Kurdish Studies Symposium, Kurds, Displacement and Resilience, University of Toronto, October 12-14, 2018

Forced displacements have long characterized the everyday experience of Kurds. From Syria and Turkey to Iraq and Iran, Kurds have been displaced, exiled and dispossessed by the dominant national states. However, Kurds have resisted the violation of their rights through a complex political and cultural processes. Having been forcibly displaced and exiled, Kurdish communities have struggled to re-establish their lives in shantytowns of cities or refugee camps. Some have been forced to leave their countries and seek refuge in Western Europe and North America. While displacement has caused dispossession, violence and suffering, Kurdish communities have developed various forms of resistance and/or resilience that range from economic support networks to community organizations providing cultural and educational services in counteracting the regimes of displacement.  

The inaugural meeting of the International Kurdish Studies Symposium at the University of Toronto will explore displacement, resistance and resilience in Kurdish context(s). The symposium invites paper abstracts that address regimes of displacement haunting Kurdish lives as well as forms and strategies of resistance and resilience. The symposium particularly welcomes contributions that discuss the ways in which the Kurdish experience expands and complicates our knowledge on displacement, dispossession, resilience and resistance.  

Please submit your 300-word abstract and two-page CV (including your contact information and institutional affiliation) as one PDF document to iksstoronto2018@gmail.com. The deadline for abstract submission is August 15, 2018.

International Kurdish Studies Symposium at the University of Toronto is a research and learning collective initiated by faculty members and graduate students, and is sponsored by various institutions and departments at the University of Toronto.





New Book Out: Routledge Handbook on the Kurds

12 07 2018

Gunter, Michael M. (ed.)

Routledge, 2019

ISBN: 9781138646643

With an estimated population of over 30 million, the Kurds are the largest stateless nation in the world. They are becoming increasingly important within regional and international geopolitics, particularly since the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the Arab Spring and the war in Syria. This multidisciplinary Handbook provides a definitive overview of a range of themes within Kurdish studies. Topics covered include:

 

 

 

 

  • Kurdish Studies in the United States and Europe
  • Early Kurdish History
  • Kurdish Culture, Literature and Cinema
  • Economic Dimensions
  • Religion
  • Geography and Travel
  • Kurdish Women
  • The Kurdish situation in Turkey, Iraq, Syria and Iran
  • The Kurdish Diaspora

With a wide range of contributions from many of the leading academic experts, this Handbook will be a vital resource for students and scholars of Kurdish Studies and Middle Eastern Studies.

For details click here.





Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (KRI) Announces 20 Scholarships for Foreign Students

23 06 2018

Having a special interest in Kurdish language, Literature and Culture, Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research/ Kurdistan Regional Government is pleased to initiate a new scholarship program entitled Kurd Scholarships and call for applications for studies starting in the academic year (2018- 2019).

The deadline for application is August 1st 2018

Non Eligibility

  • Kurdish people
  • Iraqi and Kurdistan Region citizens

Eligibility:

  • International students

Available scholarship types and number of seats:

  • Kurd Scholarships are available for bachelor in Kurdish language, Kurdish Literature, and Kurdish Culture for academic year (2018- 2019).
  • (20) seats are provided for the academic year (2018-2019)

Requirements:

  • The applicant has to have a high school (preparatory) degree, for example, National baccalaureate or its equivalent in other education system.
  • A- level in SAT1 and SAT2
  • The applicant has to submit two recommendations written by authorized officials at his his/ her school or work place.
  • The applicant has to submit his/her original copy of his/her degree with marks.
  • The applicant has to have at least (4.5) IELTS or its equivalent.

The Period of Study and the language in study program:

  • The period of the bachelor study is four academic years except the first year (Foundation) allocated for learning Kurdish and promoting communication and culture skills.
  • The whole four year bachelor study will be in Kurdish

Host universities:

The applicant will be hosted in one of the following public universities:

  • Salahaddin University/ Erbil
  • Sulaimani University
  • University of Duhok
  • Soran University
  • Koya University

Financial and other support:

The Kurd Scholarships covers the following:

  • Once the applicant is, for the first time, arrived, he/ she will be welcomed by the specific team at the airport and transferred to the host university.
  • According to the living standard in Kurdistan Region, monthly amount of ($ 600) contribution to living cost in Kurdistan Region for the whole period of the study and the foundation year.
  • Free dormitory place in the host university.
  • ($ 1000) for annual flight expenses, except the applicants from USA and Australia, their annual flight expense are ($1500).
  • The visa and residential fees
  • Annual medical insurance for $ 500 and it is only for medical treatment in the Kurdistan Region and it does not cover the medical treatment outside the Kurdistan Region. The applicant has all the right to select the insurance company)
  • The study period of the Kurd Scholarships are four academic years, if an applicant could not succeed within the specific period of time, or for any period beyond four years, the applicant will be responsible for his/ her study (tuition fees, living coast, annual flight expenses and medical insurance) expenses.

 Application:

The international students can apply and send their documents to the following email address no later than August 1st 2018:

kurdish.studies@mhe-krg.org

For details click here.





New Book Out: Turkey’s Kurdish Question from an Educational Perspective

20 06 2018

Ince, Adem

Rowman & Littlefield, 2018

ISBN: 9781498566162

Turkey’s Kurdish Question from an Educational Perspective represents a comprehensive examination of all major factors in education—teachers, curriculum, policy documents, educational attainments and textbooks—that might possibly affect Kurds. It sheds a critical spotlight on the educational side of the issue, offering a summary of existing challenges, ways to deal with these problems, and the proposal of long-term solutions to achieve permanent peace in the region.




New Book Out: Rojava Revolution, War and the Future of Syria’s Kurds

20 06 2018

Schmidinger, Thomas

Pluto Press, 2018

ISBN: 9780745337722

The Kurdish territory of Rojava in Syria has become a watchword for radical democracy, communalism and gender equality. But while Western radicals continue to project their own values onto the revolution, the complexities of the situation are often overlooked or misunderstood.

Based on over 17 years of research and fieldwork, Thomas Schmidinger provides a detailed introduction to the history and political situation in Rojava. Outlining the history of the Kurds in Syria from the late Ottoman Empire until the Syrian civil war, he describes the developments in Rojava since 2011: the protests against the regime, the establishment of a Kurdish para-state, the conflicts between the parties about the administration of the Kurdish territory and how the PYD and its People’s Councils rule the territory.

The book draws on interviews with political leaders of different parties, civil society activists, artists, fighters and religious leaders in order to paint an complex picture of the historical conflict and the contemporary situation.

For details click here.





New Book Out: Ethnic Boundaries in Turkish Politics – The Secular Kurdish Movement and Islam

8 06 2018

Sarigil, Zeki

NYU Press, 2018

ISBN: 9781479882168

One of the fault lines of Turkish politics traditionally has been the divide between religious and secular movements. However, as Zeki Sarigil argues, the secular Kurdish movement in Turkey has increasingly become aligned with Islam. As a result, Islam has become part of the movement’s political discourse, strategies and actions.
Ethnic Boundaries in Turkish Politics traces the evolving relations between the leftist, secular Kurdish movement and Islam, from an apathetic and/or antagonistic attitude in the 1970s and 1980s to an increasingly Islam-friendly approach in the 1990s to an attitude of accommodation and the rise of Kurdish-Islamic synthesis in the early 2000s. Based on 104 interviews in several provinces in Turkey (primarily Ankara, Diyarbakir, Istanbul, and Tunceli) between 2011 and 2015 as well as ethnographic data, public opinion surveys and statements from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and Kurdish leaders, Sarigil shows how the secular Kurdish movement increasingly has been endorsing Islam and Islamic actors. The reasons for this Islamic opening are global, national, and local; Sarigil demonstrates that a group of strategic and ideological factors have encouraged and/or forced Kurdish leaders to redraw symbolic and social boundaries of the movement. Namely, with the end of the Cold War support for Marxist ideas collapsed, creating increasingly more favorable responses towards religion. In addition, the movement’s need to expand its social basis and popularity; electoral politics; and legitimacy struggles against rival political actors were other major factors, which triggered the Kurdish movement’s boundary expansion (i.e. its Islamic opening). The study also shows that the Kurdish boundary making was not without any tension or contestation. The boundary expansion by Kurdish ethnopolitical elites triggered both internal and external boundary contestations.
The movement’s embrace of Islam on a more widespread level has major ramifications for politics in Turkey and in the region. Ethnic Boundaries in Turkish Politics has important insight into the PKK, modern Turkish and Islamic societies and highlights the increasing role of Islam in global politics.