Kurdish Studies Conference

          Serbest Kurdish Studies Conference 
          Buffett Institute for Global Studies
          June 7–8, 2019
          Northwestern University

Please save the date for the second annual Kurdish Studies Conference. The Kurdish Studies Conference series supports the production and dissemination of knowledge and to strengthen the network of scholars in Kurdish Studies.

The conference convenes annually to discuss the experiences and struggles of Kurds, and the historical and comparative study of Kurdish politics, society, and culture.

Inspired by postcolonial, indigenous, and critical race studies, there has been a growing interest among Kurdish Studies scholars on topics such as racialized citizenship, colonial state power, anti-colonial struggles, and the right to self-determination. However, Kurdish Studies as a field has not yet established a solid dialogue with these literatures. Nor has it fully benefitted from historical experiences around the world, which led to the development of these literatures in the first place.

In an effort to foster such dialogue and open up the field of Kurdish Studies, the 2019 Serbest Kurdish Studies Conference aims to bring together scholars who are enthusiastic to contribute to a comparative discussion of Kurdish, South African, and Palestinian experiences. Co-sponsors for this conference include the Program of African Studies at Northwestern University and the Middle East and North African Studies Program at Northwestern University.  Read more in the Call for Papers.

This conference is made possible by the generous support of Northwestern alumnus Metin Serbest, Esq. (Law '05).


Serbest Kurdish Studies Conference

Northwestern Buffett Institute

for Global Affairs

June 7-8, 2019

                                                                   conference banner

                                                              John Evans Alumni Center
                                                                   1800 Sheridan Road
                                                                        Evanston, IL

 buffett institute logo

 

                                                         CONFERENCE PROGRAM

FRIDAY, 7 June 2019

8:45 – 9:20 WELCOME

       8:45 – 9:00 Breakfast (served)

9:00-9:20         INTRODUCTORY REMARKS

Ayça Alemdaroğlu, Northwestern University

Metin Serbest, Esq. (Law '05)       

 

9:20-10:20        SESSION I: COLONIALISM AND VIOLENCE I

Chair: Ayça Alemdaroğlu, Northwestern University

Erdem İlter UCLA, Department of History
The Sheikh Said Rebellion and the Formation of Modern Turkey 1925 – 1938

Matan Cohen Columbia University, Middle Eastern South Asian and African Studies
Dependence, Independence & Interdependence: Political Belonging Beyond Unitary Sovereignty and (Neo)Colonial Walling

Bilgesu Sümer – University of Massachusetts, Department of Political Science  
Political life of P’ling’s Dead Body: Politicization of the Dead in Turkey

10:05–10:20 Q&A

 

10:20-10:30      Coffee Break

 

10:30-11:50       SESSION II: COLONIALISM AND VIOLENCE II

Chair:  İpek Yosmaoğlu, Northwestern University

Maya Avis (and Oren Ziv) – Graduate Institute of Geneva
The Non-Citizen Journalist:Narrating Colonial State Power and Constructing the Boundaries to Vision 

Nasser Abourahme – New York University, Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies
Camp/Colony: On the Vanishing Horizon of Settler Permanence

Latif Taş – SOAS University of London, School of Interdisciplinary Studies
Beyond the Colonial State: Kurdish Alternative Justice and State Building

Charlotte Watelet – EHESS, Paris – Anthropology and Political Science
Kurds among Kurds: An Ethnography of a Refugee Camp

11:30-11:50 Q&A

11:50-12:00      Lunch (served)


12:00-12:45      KEYNOTE SPEECH

Charles Mills, The Graduate Center, CUNY

 

1:00-2:20          SESSION III: LAW, THE PEACE PROCESS, AND TRANSITIONAL JUSTICE

Chair:  Wendy Pearlman, Northwestern University

Adam Sitze - Amherst College, College of Law
South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission: A Genealogy   

Nisan Alıcı- - Ulster University, Transitional Justice 
Transitional Justice in an Ongoing Conflict: A Victim-Survivor Centred Analysis of Transitional Justice Mechanisms in the Context of the Kurdish Conflict

Emilio Dabed - Visiting Fellow at Osgoode, York University Law School
Palestinian Legal Activism: Between Liberation and the ‘Desire’ of Statehood

Sinem Arslan - University of Essex, Michael Nicholson Centre for Conflict and Cooperation 
Transborder Ethnic Kin and the Dynamics of Peace Processes: Insights from the Kurdish Conflict

2:00-2:20  Q&A

2:20–2:30        Coffee Break

2:30-3:50         SESSION IV: POLITICAL ECONOMY

Chair:  Diego Arispe-Bazán, Northwestern University

Andy Clarno – University of Illinois at Chicago, Sociology and African America Studies 
The Specter and Labor of the Black Poor in South Africa after Apartheid

Veli Yadırgı – London School of Economics  
The Three Pillars of De-development in Kurdistan: Forced Displacement, Cultural Annihilation, and Economic Expropriation

Deniz Duruiz - Northwestern University, Buffett Institute for Global Affairs
The Kurdish Labor Intermediary: The Symptom of Turkey’s Racialized and Gendered Labor Regime

Patrick Lewis - University of Chicago, Department of Anthropology
Teachers, Schools, and Changing State Value Regimes: The Politics and Political-Economy of Memurluk (Being a Civil Servant) in North Kurdistan

3:30–3:50 Q&A

3:50-4:00         Coffee Break 


4:00-5:20         SESSION V: ENVIRONMENTAL CONTESTATIONS

Chair:  Zekeria Ahmed Salem, Northwestern University

Ken Salo – University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign – Department of Urban & Regional Planning
Contesting Liberal Legality: Informal Legal Cultures in Post-Apartheid South Africa’s Privatization Seafood Fishery

Allan Hassaniyan – University of Exeter, Kurdish Studies
Securitization of Environmental Activism in Iranian Kurdistan  

Pınar Dinç (and Lina Eklund)  - Lund University, Center for Middle Eastern Studies
An Interdisciplinary Approach to Forest Fires and Conflicts in the Middle East

Arda Bilgen – Independent ScholarIs the Glass Half Empty or Half Full? An Appraisal of the Four Decades of Turkey’s Southeastern Anatolia Project (GAP)

5:00–5:20 Q&A

SATURDAY, 8 June 2019

9:00-10:20        SESSION VI: NATIONALISM AND KURDISH WOMEN

Chair: Deniz Duruiz, Northwestern University

Madiha Pınar Sorma – University of Washington Seattle, Gender, Department of Women and Sexuality Studies
Denationalizing the Body: Kurdish Women’s Guerilla Resistance towards a Stateless Freedom

Nadje Al-Ali - Brown University, Watson Institute for Public and International Affairs
Nationalism and Feminism: Comparative Perspectives

Özüm Yeşiltaş - Texas A&M University-Commerce, Department of Political Science
Nationalism and Women’s Agency: Constructions of Feminist Nationalist Identity in the Kurdish Movements in Iraq and Syria

Stanley Thangaraj - City College of New York, Department of Anthropology
Deploying "Woman" and Managing Difference: Transnational Negotiations of Diasporic Identity

10:00-10:20 Q&A

 

10:20-10:30      Coffee Break

 

10:30–11:35      SESSION VII: THE KURDISH POLITICAL MOVEMENT

Chair:  Danny Postel, Northwestern University

Elif Genç – The New School for Social Sciences, Department of Political Science
Kurdish Movement’s Realpolitik: The Case of Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict

Gülay Kılıçaslan - York University, Department of Sociology
Situating Kurdish Forced Migration as a Contentious Political Terrain in Turkey  

Sardar Saadi – University of Toronto, Department of Anthropology  
Sovereignty in Neighborhood: Turkish Islamic Hegemony versus Kurdish Democratic Autonomy in Sur, Diyarbakır

11:15–11:35 Q&A

11:35–1:00        Lunch

1:00-2:00          SESSION VIII: COMPARISON WORKSHOPS

2:00-3:00          SESSION IX: WORKSHOP PRESENTATIONS -10 mins. for each group

3:00-3:15          Coffee Break

3:15-4:00          CLOSING SESSION: KURDISH STUDIES FROM A POSTCOLONIAL PERSPECTIVE