3rd Kurdish Studies Summer School

14 02 2018

Kurdish Studies Summer School:  3-6 September 2018

Kurdish Politics and Society: Contemporary and Historical Perspectives

Please join us at this intensive summer school at the Kurdish Institute, Paris, focusing on Kurdish politics and society. The school is designed to engage postgraduate students (Master and PhD level) in the field of Kurdish Studies and the politics, society and culture of Kurds.


Dates: 3-6 September 2018

Place: Kurdish Institute, Paris

Registration Fees: 125 Euros (until 25 April 2018)

Registration fees cover tuition and venue costs.

Students will arrange and pay for their own accommodation and travel.

The school is subsidized by the Kurdish Institute and there are no additional funds or scholarships.


Keynote lecturers and panellists include:

  1. Dr Salih Akin (University of Rouen, France)
  2. Professor Hamit Bozarslan (EHESS, Paris, France)
  3. Dr Ipek Demir (University of Leicester, UK)
  4. Dr Cengiz Gunes (Open University, UK)
  5. Dr Choman Hardi (American University of Iraq)
  6. Dr Janet Klein (Akron, Ohio, US)
  7. Dr Clémence Scalbert-Yucel (University of Exeter, UK)

The lectures and workshops will be organized in line with the lecturers’ area of expertise. They will be delivered in English, and broadly in these areas:

Area 1: Kurdish Language and the Politics of Kurdish Language

Area 2: Kurdish Studies & Middle Eastern Studies: Methodological Issues

Area 3: Kurdish Diaspora and Transnationalism

Area 4: Kurdish Political Movement and Discourse

Area 5: Gender and Kurdish Studies

Area 6: History of Kurds and of Kurdistan

Area 7: Kurdish Literature and Culture


The format of each day is as follows:

1)   Plenary/keynote lectures, outlining the main approaches and methods employed in their specific field (e.g. history).

2)   15 minute presentations by students which are then followed by feedback from at least one keynote speaker. Group discussion and feedback.

3)   Closing session with two student rapporteurs summing up key insights from the day and closing statements.



Please fill in the attached application form.

You are welcome to apply as one of the following:

(a) as a presenter of a paper

(b) as an attendee

You will be able to indicate this on the application form.


Those wishing to present a paper, please include a long abstract (500-600 words) in the application form. Please note that both the word limit and the deadline are strict.

Send the application form to KurdishStudiesSummerSchool@gmail.com

Deadline: 12 March 2018, 12noon UK time.

Shortlisting will be finalised and communicated by 23 March 2018



Registration (for those who have been accepted) will open on 5 April 2018

Early Registration Deadline: 25 April 2018

Early Registration Fee: 125 Euros

Registration Fees after 25 April 2018200 Euros

Please note that this is not a conference but a teaching and learning event involving teaching sessions from senior scholars of Kurdish Studies. It is a unique opportunity and places are strictly limited.

In the event of the summer school being oversubscribed, participants may be selected according to the likely coherence of the sessions – this is not necessarily a reflection on the quality of work submitted.

Priority will be given to students who have not attended, but previous attendees are welcome to submit applications.

Please note that the Kurdish Institute in Paris unfortunately has no wheelchair access.

For the application form click below



New Book Out: The Kurdish Women of Turkey – Building a Nation, Struggling for Gender Parity

11 01 2018

Basch-Harod, Heidi

Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies, 2017

ISBN: 978-965-224-108-5

Actively engaged in an ethno-nationalist struggle since the 1980s, the story of the Kurdish women of Turkey is one current example of women’s involvement in shaping the history of the region. This book focuses upon Kurdish women of Turkey and the ongoing evolution of their role in defining and mobilizing the Kurdish quest for recognition as a people within and against the Republic of Turkey.

For details click here.

New Book Out: The Alphabetic Variations of Kurdish Scripts – Why and How?

10 01 2018

Khurshid, Ali Ghazi

Script and Vision, 2017

ISBN: 9198434403

The Kurdish language consists of a continuum of related spoken varieties without having a standardized linguistic entity, and is mainly spoken in those area of Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria which comprise Kurdistan. Kurdish is without a unified writing system, as well. The Kurds have been obliged to modify orthographies according to the type of script in use in those countries that Kurdistan is annexed to.The author describes the historical development and importance of writing; and the reason behind adaptation of a specific writing system. He also describes the historical development of the Kurdish writing, the reason of having different kinds of alphabet and related problems and solutions.

For details click here.

Seminar: The Dream of the Nation-State in a Globalized World

12 10 2017

The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) invites you to a seminar addressing the question of national self-determination in different parts of the world.

Political claims to national independence and self-determination have in recent years gained prominence in many parts of the world. Not that long ago the process of globalization, economic interdependence and an increasing number of global challenges (e.g. terrorism and climate change) were thought to diminish the appeal of independence for non-sovereign regions in Europe, some parts of the Middle East and elsewhere. However, this does not seem to have happened. Instead the dream of the nation-state seems to enjoy an enduring appeal.

Why do Catalans seek national independence and what implications do the current political crisis in Spain have for the EU? How is it that, despite international law, Palestinans’ right to self-determination has not transformed into a national statehood that respects their rights? After the Iraqi-Kurdish referendum, what are the prospects for an independent Kurdish state in the Middle East?

Richard Gillespie, Professor of Politics and founder of the Europe and the World Centre at the University of Liverpool.

Cherine Hussein, Research Fellow, UI

Welat Zeydanlıoğlu, Editor of the journal Kurdish Studies and the coordinator of the Kurdish Studies Network (KSN).

Niklas Bremberg, Research Fellow, UI.


Date: Thursday 19 October, 2017
Time: 13.00-14.30. Registration from 12.30
Location: The Swedish Institute of International Affairs, Drottning Kristinas väg 37, Stockholm
Seminar fee: Free of charge
Language: English

For details click here.

New Book Out: The Kurdish Question Revisited

6 09 2017

Stansfield, Gareth & Shareef, Mohammed (eds)

Hurst, 2017

ISBN: 9781849045919

The Kurds, once marginal in the study of the Middle East and secondary in its international relations, have moved to centre stage in recent years. In Turkey, where the Kurdish question is an issue of national significance, and in Iraq, where the gains made by the Kurdistan Regional Government have allowed it to impose its authority, moves are afoot to solve ‘the Kurdish Question’ once and for all. In Syria, where the Kurds have borne the brunt of the Islamic State’s onslaught as they defended their three self-declared cantons of Afrin, Kobane, and Cezire, and in Iran, where they struggle to express their cultural distinctiveness and suffer disproportionately at the hands of the Islamic Republic’s security and intelligence services, the picture is less positive. Yet the situations in both countries remain in flux, affected by developments in Iraq and Turkey in a manner that suggests we may have to revise the notion of the Kurds being forever divided by the boundaries of the Middle East and subsumed into the state projects of other nations. The contributors to The Kurdish Question Revisited offer insights into how this once seemingly intractable, immutable phenomenon is being transformed amid the new political realities of the Middle East.

For details click here.

Call for Papers: Kurdish Culture, Identity and Geopolitics – Towards Decolonization

17 08 2017

Zanj: The Journal of Critical Global South Studies is a space for a broad range of conversations of and by the Global South, now published by Pluto Journals in the UK. In this special volume, global scholars critically approach the past, present and future of Kurdish identity, geography, nationalism, and socio-political movements for change. Focusing on contemporary Kurdish regions and their indigenous constituents, Kurdish cities and broader Kurdish geopolitics, this volume intends to initiate dialogue about the modes and methods of decolonization, cultural survival, creative definition, reinvention and transformation.

Kurds have often been the victim of modern empires, power-politics, and their attendant conceptual categories. When the ‘Scramble for the Middle East’ occurred 100 years ago, Kurds were left bereft of the critical political unit since the nineteenth century: the nation-state. Hence, Kurds continue to exist at and/or beyond the boundaries of communal categorization, including national, regional, ethnic, and cultural configurations of identification, a vantage point that provides unique and important lessons worthy of analysis.

Kurdish regions, cities, parties and communities are increasingly emergent actors in an expanding global circle of individuals, groups, communities, institutions and governments, even as some of the most violent atrocities in recent history have been and are still being experienced in the Kurdish regions. This collection aims to: (1) develop a solid understanding of the crucial historical timeline which led to Kurdish statelessness and subsequent deterritorialization / reterritorialization and other developments in the Kurdish political status-quo, (2) present substantial and representative snapshots of the contemporary Kurdish zeitgeist, how communities and individuals are forming identities in this context, and/or (3) discuss the future of Kurds, Kurdish towns, cities, regions and communities.

Limited to the realm of paradiplomacy, in the extremely complex “quadri-regional” dynamics of the Kurdish status quo, the Kurdish case represents a deadly quagmire in which some of the most dystopian of dreams have already come true, leaving destroyed lives in its wake. This collection is therefore also a modest attempt by global scholars to push a progressive agenda, seeking ways and means to overcome the heavy weight of the past and present, and to contribute to the utopian imaginary of Kurdish futures.

As an interdisciplinary space for global scholars with critical engagements on the Global South, this volume seeks innovative and critical work on Kurds and Kurdish issues related (but not limited) to the following areas of research:

  • History, political history and historical analysis of Kurdish communities, parties, institutions, regions and colonialism, decolonization
  • Identity, difference, diversity, intersectionality, multiculturalism, transregional identifications, intersectional modes of alliance building, indigenous epistemology
  • State, nation, nation-state, nationalism, state formation, state capacity building, diplomacy and statecraft, comparative politics, regionalism/federalism, electoral systems, parties, democracy, self-ruling and self-determination
  • Critical theory, world systems theory, power theory, feminist theory, ecology
  • Politics of contention, identity, ethnicity, gender, religion
  • Conflict, security, intelligence, military, crime, violence, displacement, political repression
  • Political Economy, International Development, Global Health, Education, Infrastructure and Urban Development, Trade, Self-sufficiency, Human Development/Security, Resilience

Publication Timeline:

  • August 25th: Deadline for Abstracts (150-200 words)
  • August 30th: Response to Abstracts.
  • November 15th: Deadline for final articles
  • December 30th: Reviewers Feedback
  • January 15th 2018: Final revisions, proofs

Please send abstracts and inquiries to:


Please Note: Zanj was formerly called South: Critical Global South Studies and we are still in transition to the new name.

Editor: Dr. Jesse Benjamin

Co-Editors: Dr. Djene Bajalan and Dr. Haluk Baran Bingöl


To simplify the initial submission process, please follow the basic formatting guideline below:

  • Times New Roman size 12, double-spaced,
  • End of article reference page with full citations in Chicago Style
  • BOOK: Rodney, Walter. How Europe Underdeveloped Africa. London: Bogle-L’Ouverture, 1972.
  • CHAPTER IN BOOK: Lorde, Audre. “Coal.” In New Black Voices: An Anthology of Contemporary Afro-American Literature, edited by Abraham Chapman, 291-292. New York: NAL/Penguin, 1972.
  • ARTICLE IN PRINT JOURNAL: Crowder, Ralph L. “The Historical Context and Political Significance of Harlem’s Street Scholar Community.” Afro-Americans in New York Life and History 34(1) (2010): 34-71.
  • Footnotes (at bottom of page), not endnotes; with brief relevant text and/or citation of Author’s last name and year of publication only,
  • No in-text citations,
  • You may submit your document either as a .pdf or .doc,
  • Include a short (100-200 word) abstract to supplement your piece,
  • Please provide 5-10 keywords for your article,
  • Length of article: We place no boundaries on the length of your work, as long as the content is sufficiently guided and relevant throughout,
  • Do not include a cover page or your name on document itself.

New Book Out: The Political Economy of the Kurds of Turkey – From the Ottoman Empire to the Turkish Republic

14 08 2017

Yadirgi, Veli

Cambridge University Press, 2017

ISBN: 9781316848579

In recent years, the persecution of the Kurds in the Middle East under ISIS in Iraq and Syria has drawn increasing attention from the international media. In this book, Veli Yadirgi analyses the socioeconomic and political structures and transformations of the Kurdish people from the Ottoman era through to the modern Turkish Republic, arguing that there is a symbiotic relationship between the Kurdish question and the de-development of the predominantly Kurdish domains, making an ideal read for historians of the region and those studying the socio-political and economic evolution of the Kurds. First outlining theoretical perspectives on Kurdish identity, socioeconomic development and the Kurdish question, Yadirgi then explores the social, economic and political origins of Ottoman Kurdistan following its annexation by the Ottomans in 1514. Finally, he deals with the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, and the subsequent foundation and evolution of the Kurdish question in the new Turkish Republic.

For details click here.