The Ideal Refugees
Islam, Gender, and the Sahrawi Politics of Survival
Publication Year: 2013
Published by: Syracuse University Press
Title Page, Copyright
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Illustrations and Maps
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this book is the outcome of a multisited research effort funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (2005–9). My analysis has benefited from consultations with and feedback from various audiences, including during seminars and conferences at the Universities of Cambridge and...
Acronyms and Abbreviations
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The “uniqueness” and social superiority of Sahrawi refugees over “other refugees” have been systematically proclaimed by Western academics and representatives of nongovernmental organizations (NGO) since the establishment of the Algerian-based Sahrawi refugee camps...
1 —Engendering the Colonial Encounter
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Reports of the Sahrawi refugee context habitually claim that Sahrawi women are, and always have been, “free,” “equal,” and “active participants” in all areas of refugee camp life due to their historically “equal” role in “Sahrawi society” both before and during much of the...
2 —The Sahrawi Refugee Camps
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Unlike refugee camps that are run and controlled by international organizations such as the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), the Sahrawi refugee camps have been “managed” since their creation by the Polisario Front, which proclaimed the birth of the...
3 —Emerging Discourse
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Although alternative, and sometimes competing, descriptions emerge in many reports and articles on the Sahrawi refugee camps, the frequency with which the same terms and conceptualizations of Sahrawi women arose during my multisited interviews demands careful examination....
4 —Secular Sisters, Muslim Others,and the Politics of Survival
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During their interactions with Western aid providers, the Polisario/ SADR has engaged in a process of what Yeğenoğlu refers to as “the historical inscription of a particular identity” (1998, 3) by emphasizing certain characteristics while silencing others for strategic reasons. The ...
5 —Discursive Silences,“Ideal Women,” and Directing Aid
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The official prioritization and centralization of idealized and homogenized “Sahrawi women” has been detrimental to those Sahrawi refugees who are marginalized, silenced, and displaced by the Polisario/ SADR, civil-society solidarity networks, and/or other international actors....
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Since the establishment of the Sahrawi refugee camps in late 1975, the Polisario/SADR and NUSW have strategically mobilized idealized and homogenized claims vis-à-vis “Sahrawi women” to secure humanitarian and political support from Western nonstate audiences. In this book, I have...
Glossary of Key Arabic and Spanish Terms
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Page Count: 304
Illustrations: 13 black and white
Publication Year: 2013
Series Title: Gender, Culture and Politics
Series Editor Byline: Suad Joseph, Simona Sharoni and miriam cooke