Date of Degree

2-2021

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Program

Anthropology

Advisor

Vincent Crapanzano

Committee Members

Marc Edelman

Jonathan Shannon

Kabir Tambar

Subject Categories

Social and Cultural Anthropology

Keywords

Migration, nationalism and pluralism, belonging, recognition, humanitarianism

Abstract

This study analyzes Syrian migration to Turkey and the accompanying regime of governing diversity formed by the Turkish state and transnational experts to manage the so-called “Syrian refugee crisis.” It discusses how this new regime tried to establish an apolitical, ahistorical space to devise solutions to the problems of integration, social inclusion, and cohesion, while conflicting and shifting forms of power govern the lives of Syrians and other minorities in the country. It explores how shifting constructions of national identity and citizenship embedded in liberal multiculturalism discourses underlie this regime and reproduce the limits and discontents of tactics of inclusion in contemporary Turkey. Furthermore, this study explores how different groups engage with, perceive, and challenge the regime of governing diversity that defines and regulates Syrians’ lives in Turkey. It discusses the affective realm of different groups’ attachments to constructs of national identity and belonging and how they rearticulate claims to national citizenship through which they reproduce Syrians as Turkey’s new Others. Lastly, this study examines how Syrians have created new lives as refugees and reproduced new understandings of belonging and identity.

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