|Beyond Humanitarian Relief: Social Networks and the Role of Shared Identity in Refugee Belonging and Support in Turkey||Michael Kaplan||August, 2020||
A considerable body of research explores the ways in which refugees exert agency and establish belonging in exile. This scholarship challenges popular tropes that reduce the varied experiences of displacement to generalized themes of crisis, uprootedness, and suffering. Through exploring refugee involvement in Islamic communities in Turkey, this paper considers the role played by informal social networks and actors in both helping Syrian refugees to secure their basic needs, as well as in fostering subjectivities of belonging. Drawing on secondary research as well as on participant observation and interviews conducted with Syrians living in Turkey, it argues that attention to social networks built upon shared modes of identification, such as being devoutly religious, can offer generative insight into processes of emplacement among refugees. These networks not only make visible some of the problematic aspects of humanitarianism associated with non-governmental organizations, but also present alternative models built upon mutual support and care. At the same time, while recognizing the benefits of informal social networks, this paper also considers the potential for new boundaries and exclusions to emerge where others recede.
|refugees, Humanitarianism, Turkey, Belonging, Syrians, social networks, Anthropology|
|The Intersection of Labour and Refugee Policies in the Middle East and Turkey: Exploring the Dynamics of "Permanent Temporariness"||Souad Osseiran||September, 2020||
The majority of Syrian refugees who have migrated to neighbouring countries in the Middle East and Turkey are faced with being “permanently temporary,” whether this temporariness defines their legal status, or state actor policies targeting refugees. The permanent temporariness of Syrian refugees in the region, while reinforced by various (non-)state actors, and produced differently based on the history and asylum framework of nation states in the region, aims primarily at incorporating Syrian refugees into local economies as surplus labour. This paper seeks to examine the incorporation of refugees as labour in relation to the development of migration governance in the region. Refugees as labour is used to conceptualize how refugees, as a type of mobile population, are approached as a desirable source of labour power due to their precarious position and permanently temporary presence. As such, the paper critically evaluates the ways in which refugees as labour are normalised. Lastly, it seeks to enquire how this impacts refugeehood as a political-legal concept.
|refugees, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Labour, Migration Policies, Asylum Politics|
|Migration Emergencies and Multi-Level Governance at the EU–Turkey Border||Nefise Ela Gökalp Aras||August, 2020||
Since 2011, political, social, environmental, and economic instability in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has sparked large transnational population movements that have stressed existing state and non-state migration management systems to capacity. This has created opportunities for new actors – including national and international non-governmental organisations (NGOs), intergovernmental organisations (IGOs), and even regional and municipal administrations – to assume roles traditionally performed by national governments. Against this background, this paper seeks to shed light on recent changes in Turkey’s border governance, particularly concerning its relationship to the European Union (EU).
The paper focuses on the roles of and interaction between various local, international and supranational actors (both state and non-state). Drawing on concepts of governance, the paper critically analyses Turkey’s approach to border management since 2011. It argues that the EU and the Syrian mass migration are the most significant forces of change in Turkey’s border management, which seems to have become more inclusive and open to different actors such as NGOs or IGOs, and Turkish state actors exclusively assume a control function, while NGOs and IGOs are assigned a care function. It is informed by fieldwork conducted between July and November 2018 at the main sea border-crossing points of Turkey’s Mediterranean coast.
|border management, multi-level governance, Turkey, Civil Society, inter-governmental organisations|
|“What We Lost in Syria, We Had Already Lost in Palestine:” Uncovering Stories Across Generations of Palestinian Women Born in Syria||Mette Edith Lundsfryd Stendevad||July, 2020||
Knowledge about the stateless Palestinian population of Syria is limited, and the experiences of Palestinian women particularly remains uncovered. This paper argues that the loss of Syria as a safe home affects Palestinian woman born in Syria in several ways. The paper explores twelve constraints that bear an impact on women’s lives, including female experiences of statelessness, denial of “the right of return,” forced family separations and lack of access to uninterrupted family life, lack of freedom of movement, the inability to pass nationality onto children, denial of UNRWA services, lack of rights to political participation, unemployability, lack of access to protection as refugees, lack of rights to belong via citizenship, and experiences of racialisation. The structural constraints have disproportional implications with regards to the women’s age, education level, marital status, maternity status, and their current place of exile. The results presented here are based on women’s oral history as part of a decolonial intersectional feminist epistemology centralised in Palestine Studies. This paper illustrates a prolonged, transgenerational, and cross-continental marginalisation of Palestinian women from Syria, while also documenting their endeavours to speak up for their right to belong where they are, as well as to return to Palestine.
|refugees, Oral History, Palestinian Women from Syria, Gendered Statelessness, Decolonial Intersectional Feminism|
|Syrian Refugee Men in Za‘tari Camp: Humanitarianism, Masculinities, and “Vulnerabilities”||Lewis Turner||July, 2020||
This paper summarises the findings of a research project on humanitarian work with Syrian refugee men, focused on Za‘tari Refugee Camp in Jordan. It argues that, for humanitarians, refugee men present a challenge. They are read in gendered and racialized ways, as independent, agential, political and at times threatening, and thereby disrupt humanitarian visions of refugeehood as a passive, feminised subject position. In this paper, these arguments are demonstrated through an exploration of some of the key areas the research focused on: how Syrian men were understood as objects of humanitarian care, how humanitarians understood Syrian men’s (non-)“vulnerability,” and Syrian men’s attempts to create livelihoods opportunities in the camp. The paper is based on extensive ethnographic participant-observation in the camp, and interviews with humanitarian workers and Syrian refugees in Jordan, which was undertaken in 2015-2016.
|Mascunalities, Syrian Refugees, Za‘tari Refugee Camp, vulnerability, Jordan|
|The Obstacles to Decent Work for Migrants in Jordan: A Discussion with Alia Hindawi||Jennifer Gordon||June, 2020||
Alia Hindawi, Programme Manager for Jordan and Lebanon at the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre (BHRRC), is a longtime advocate for the rights of migrant and refugee workers in the Middle East. Born in Pakistan and raised in Jordan, Hindawi has worked for the International Organization for Migration and the International Labour Organization, as well as for the International Trade Union Confederation and the Jordanian Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation, among others. In this interview, she explains how the kafala (migrant sponsorship) system interacts with other formal and informal structures on the transnational, national, and individual level and contributes to the exploitation of migrant workers in Jordan, and recommends a set of reforms to address these issues.
|Migrant Workers, refugees, Labour Rights, Jordan|
|Unravelling Histories of Displacement: The Protracted Refugeehood of Syrian Kurds in Istanbul||Adnan Keği, Saygun Gökarıksel||June, 2020||
This paper critically engages with Turkey’s refugee governance by offering insight into the daily struggles, aspirations, and longings of Syrian Kurdish migrants living in the inner-city neighbourhood of Demirkapı, Istanbul. It aims to sketch a multifaceted Kurdish geography of displacements beyond nation-state borders and to show how social differences and hierarchies of class, gender, and ethnicity shape greatly the experiences of the groups living in the neighbourhood. The paper is based on an ethnographic field research that consists of first-hand observations, conversations, and 25 semi-structured in-depth interviews with Kurdish migrants. The emplaced, ethnographic research is particularly promising to understand the daily lives of migrants and their multi-layered history of displacement and migration within and across borders. This history, we underscore, is not a past history, but one that unfolds in the present, within the current social hierarchies and in the midst of the ongoing crises in Syria and Iraq that poignantly shape the feelings, expectations, and memories of the Kurdish people currently living in Demirkapı. Each life trajectory, that we briefly describe, involves a strenuous effort to establish a relatively stable and enriching life under the precarious conditions of ongoing crises and authoritarian neoliberal capitalism.
|Migration Governance, Migration, Migrant Workers, refugees|
|Challenging “Migration Governance” in the Middle East and Turkey: Dynamic Power Relations, Contested Interventions, and Individual Strategies||Amreesha Jagarnathsingh , Maissam Nimer||May, 2020||
This special issue aims to challenge the way in which migration is “governed” in the Middle East and Turkey. Migration governance entails the “norms and organisational structures which regulate and shape how states respond to international migration.”
|Migration, Migration Governance, refugees, Middle East|
|مسار امرأة فلسطينية في بناء هويتها: من الألم إلى الفعل||Marie Kortam||August, 2017||
L’histoire de Nour montre comment elle s’est construite en tant que sujet dans une trajectoire douloureuse. Malgré son vécu douloureux, elle a construit un « moi » fort et ce, même en se pliant à certaines exigences, en acceptant des contraintes et en affrontant des rapports de domination. Dans cet article, Nour se livre dans un moment identitaire qui se caractérise par une prise de distance (réflexive ou sensible) avec l’histoire en cours.
|Identity, Palestinian Woman, Violence, Palestinian Refugee Camps in Lebanon|
|التجول في حقل ألغام السلطة - تنظيم نقابة عاملات المنازل في لبنان||Farah Kobaissy||July, 2017||
يتفحّص هذا المقال عملية قيام عاملات المنازل المهاجرات في لبنان بتشكيل نقابة. بدأت هذه السيرورة مجموعةٌ من المنظمات غير الحكومية، المحلية والدولية، مع الاتحاد الوطني لنقابات العمال والمستخدمين في لبنان. يسلّط هذا المقال الضوء على القدرات الكامنة لدى العاملات في بناء نقابتهن، وكذلك العقبات التي تواجههن في هذا السبيل. تعود هذه العقبات إلى مجالاتٍ عدّة من السلطة التي يجب عليهنّ التفاوض معها أو تحدّيها على مستوى الدولة والمنظمات غير الحكومية وزعامة الاتحاد الوطني للعمال والمستخدمين. من خلال العمل الميداني والملاحظة التشاركية والمقابلات المعمّقة المجراة مع الناشطات النقابيات، يركّز هذا المقال على الديناميات الخاصة بالنوع الاجتماعي والعرق وعلى العلاقات بين العاملات اللواتي يشكّلن النقابة وزعامة الاتحاد الوطني، وكذلك على علاقتهن بالدولة اللبنانية. ترغمنا حالتهن على أن نأخذ بالحسبان التحديات التي يطرحها تأنيث العمالة ودولنتها على وجود هياكل النقابات العمالية القائمة والوسائل التي نتخيل فيها العمالة والحركات الاجتماعية عموماً.
|Migration, Gender Issues, Syndicate, Union Organising, Labour & Livelihoods, Migrant Domestic Workers|
|De la Syrie au Liban : trajectoires migratoires et militantes de trois femmes palestiniennes||Valentina Napolitano||June, 2017||
Cet article propose de retracer la trajectoire migratoire et militante de trois femmes palestiniennes de Syrie qui ont trouvé refuge au Liban en raison de l’actuel conflit. Outre le fait de reconstruire les étapes de la migration et de l’installation au Liban, cet article interroge plus particulièrement les effets hétérogènes du déplacement forcé sur les formes d’activisme entreprises par ces femmes qui, avant leur départ de Syrie, étaient impliquées à différents degrés dans des domaines tels que l’aide humanitaire et l’information. En se penchant sur des trajectoires de femmes, cet article souhaite en outre comprendre si le « genre » constitue ou pas une contrainte aux formes d’investissement de ces femmes réfugiées.
|Activism & Engagement, Palestinian Refugees from Syria, Women's Participation, Gender, Post-conflict Reconstruction|
|The Peaceful Settlement of Syrian Refugees in the Eastern suburbs of Beirut: Understanding the causes of social stability||Marianne Madoré||March, 2016||
This article focuses on the densely populated municipality of Bourj Hammoud, where the proportion of registered Syrian refugees has reached a fifth of the local population without leading to any major violent episodes. Based on extensive ethnographic study, this article reveals how, combined, Bourj Hammoud’s residents’ specific religious or historical ties with Syrian refugees, lenient municipal regulation of refugees movement, and the abilities of the refugees to navigate the city, has allowed peace to prevail through out the city, despite its high number of refugees.
|Syrian Refugees, Borj Hammoud, Peace & Security|
|Between Radicalization and Mediation Processes: a Political Mapping of Palestinian Refugee Camps in Lebanon*||Nicolas Dot-Pouillard||October, 2015||
Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon are often depicted as “no-law zones” that give rise to Salafist-Jihadist factions, and inter-related military networks between some Lebanese, Palestinian and Syrian groups. The Lebanese army and its intelligence apparatus are not in a totally antagonistic relationship with Palestinian actors and despite their divisions, Palestinian organizations, from Islamists to Nationalists and Leftists, cooperate with each other. This paper argues that an inter-Palestinian mediation process and a constant dialogue with Lebanese authorities are surely a precondition to face Salafist radicalization in Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon.
|Palestinian Refugee Camps in Lebanon, Palestinian Refugees, Radicalization|
|Revisiting Vulnerability in a Slum of Beirut: when Citizenship Disempowers||Estella Carpi||July, 2015||
While refugee and migrant workers’ poverties have become the only external interpretative lens to explore vulnerability in Lebanon, a kind of urban poverty, which is neither connected to the political violence of regional wars nor to the flawed refugee regime, will be investigated through ethnographic methods.
|Chronic Neglect, Poverty, vulnerability, Citizenship, Political Loyalty, Identity Politics|
|Challenges of aid coordination in a complex crisis: An overview of funding policies and conditions regarding aid provision to Syrian refugees in Lebanon||Dalya Mitri||May, 2014||
This paper examines the existing funding structures and policies towards aid provision to Syrian refugees in Lebanon, it looks into institutional and operational differences of donor states and communities and their impact on the management of the crisis.
|Syrian Refugees, funding policies, non-traditional aid actors, politicization of humanitarian aid, Coordination in Complex Emergencies|
|Regional differences in the conditions of Syrian refugees in Lebanon||Sam van Vliet, Guita Hourani||April, 2014||
This paper examines the different political and legal environments of Lebanon’s regions and how these contexts affect Syrian refugees’ needs, and contribute to shaping aid design and delivery.
|Syrian Refugees, Lebanon, host-refugee relations, regional differences, Governance, Aid|
|The Everyday Experience of Humanitarianism in Akkar Villages||Estella Carpi||March, 2014||
This paper aims to understand the way everyday practices are changing in response to humanitarian programs currently in place in North Lebanon, through the use of a bottom-up ethnographic approach.
|Syrian Refugees, Ethnicization, Chronic Neglect, Humanitarianism, Politicization, Emergency relief|
Research & Analysis