Kurdish women’s knowledge of the state: from the guerrilla to the refugee camp

About the speaker:
Dilar Dirik is the Joyce Pearce Junior Research Fellow at Lady Margaret Hall, University of Oxford, a post held in conjunction with the Refugee Studies Centre. She holds a BA in History and Political Science with a minor in Philosophy and an MA in International Studies. Dilar worked on her PhD in Sociology at the University of Cambridge.
Building on her past work on revolutionary women’s struggles, freedom concepts and radical democracy in Kurdistan, her research at the RSC focuses on two timely issues around displacement in the Middle East region. Her first project considers layers of statelessness and self-determination by focusing on autonomously run refugee camps in the majority Kurdish regions of Iraq and Syria and the different ways in which they relate to local self-declared self-governing institutions. What can we learn about democracy beyond the nation-state by looking at alternative practices of self-determination that challenge dominant international structures? Secondly, Dilar researches women’s quests for justice in the aftermath of the violence inflicted by the so-called Islamic State group. In general, she is interested in investigating the intersections between state/statelessness, knowledge, and power from feminist, revolutionary and non-state/indigenous perspectives. Her research agenda aims to broaden our understanding of refugeehood in favour of concrete, just and practical solutions that centre the self-determination of the dispossessed. Dilar is teaching the option module “Statelessness: Politics, Knowledge and Resistance” on the MSc in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies.