Reconfiguring Diaspora: Kurds Online

Mahmod, Jowan. 2012. Reconfiguring Diaspora: Kurds Online. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

This research examines diasporic transformations and the construction of belongings through new technologies of communication by looking at young Kurdish diasporas in Sweden and the UK. It argues that the diaspora concept needs to be reconceptualised in light of digital information and communication technologies and in relation to the imagined community. Empirical evidence from Kurdish diasporas has drawn attention to some missing gaps in the literature. The research asks what it means to be a Kurd in diaspora and what role new media and online communities have in the renegotiation and construction of belongings. By engaging with post-colonial and feminist studies, I unpick fixed categories of identity, belongings and home, and I argue for performativities of those belongings.

Based on a year-long ethnographic online study supplemented by offline face-to-face interviews with young Kurds in these locations, and with additional reference to homeland- based Kurds, the research presents three main empirical chapters based on themes derived from the online community’s concerns, and focuses on Swedish, British, and Kurdish forums. The chapters discuss gender and religious tensions; cultural elements and historical suffering; and political engagements in homeland and settlement countries. A fourth chapter takes a step back from online and offline material and examines the comparative approach between the two diasporas, diasporic and homeland Kurds, in both offline and online environments. Against the background of such a close-up comparative study, this research argues for a reconsideration of diasporic formations that are currently fixed between homeland and settlement country, and it presents new perspectives on these that relates to new definitional positions in diasporic formations that have significant implications for the concept of the imagined community.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Additional Information:

Thesis now published by Palgrave


Diaspora, Kurds, online community, identity, transnationalism

Related URLs:

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Media, Communications and Cultural Studies


9 November 2012

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

26 Apr 2013 13:47

Last Modified:

08 Sep 2022 11:19


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